Doctor insights on:
Smoking Addiction And Compulsive Behaviors
Addiction is a primary, chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory, and related circuitry. Dysfunction in these circuits leads to characteristic biological, psychological, social and spiritual manifestations. This is reflected in an individual pathologically pursuing reward and/or relief by substance use and other behaviors. A person affected by addiction will be unable to consistently Abstain from use, will have Impaired Behavioral control, will have Craving or increased "hunger" for drugs or rewarding experiences, will have a Dysfunctional Emotional response, and will show diminished recognition of significant problems with their own ...Read more
Habits are habits: Addictive behavior has common underpinnings despite the various chemicals, physical or mechanical, or ritualistic, behaviors may initiate them. Areas of the brain are involved similarly regardless of the addicting substance. Dopamine is a prime mediator of addiction. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Smoking, probably: There are over 50 million smokers in the us, and it is a major cause of death and disability, in addition to enormous financial costs. Nobody knows how many problem gamblers there are, and there are few medical costs associated (although there is a higher rate of smoking, alcohol and drug abuse in problem gamblers). Both cause misery and pain to sufferers, their families and society at large. ...Read more
I am experiencing impulsive or reckless behavior, socially withdrawn, impaired social skills, compulsive behavior, emotional problems and personality changes.
Recommend assessment: You have described a lot of symptoms that could potentially affect your life and/or that could get worse if not addressed. There are ways to manage those symptoms, but it is important to be assessed by a mental health professional (psychologist or psychiatrist) who can help you to figure out what is causing those symptoms and how to best address them. ...Read more
Compulsive behaviors: Are repetitive, performed according to certain rules or in a stereotypical fashion; a tendency to repeat the same, often purposeless acts; with sense of having to do it. Impulsive behaviors are performed with little forethought and without regards to consequences, driven by the desire to obtain pleasure, gratification or arousal. Both involve brain function and may occur in same person. ...Read more
unlikely: Some studies show that antidepressants can help people abstain from drinking, some studies show that this is useless. Some of the snris are better not to be taken with alcohol. It might help if you believe that a person is drinking "to self medicate for depression or anxiety". And this is difficult, because drinking brings depression and anxiety. Compulsive liar? - all of them do it for a differen. ...Read more
Havedepression,stress,anger problems,epilepsy,body pains and aches,lung pain and drug addiction,and alcohol abuse aswel as cigarettes abuse?
Sounds Difficult: Can you please clarify what the question is. Questions should be clear and specific. Can re-ask. Thanks. ...Read more
BOTH!!: I agree that cigarette smoking is most like both mental and physical in its addiction but sometimes can be more mental. For instance in someone that smokes 5 or less cigarettes a day, the addiction is more psychological. Nevertheless, it is all or none when you smoke. No such thing as a "casual" smoker. Try to quit or do not ever start. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Any thoughts on why people with schizophrenia have such high rates of smoking (nicotine addiction)?
Nicotine & Schiz: There are different ideas about this, but no "written in stone" answers. One is the possibility that nicotine may assist people whose internal "gating" mechanisms may be faulty -- where they have trouble differentiating inner from outer stimuli. Another is that nicotine may simply be more addicting in schizophrenic brains than others. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23919443. ...Read moreSee 2 more doctor answers
Big picture: Dr. Fowler's advice to attend a 12 step group is very good. Your physician can offer medication that in low doses may abolish the craving. I would also urge you to think of the people who love you, and who you love. Compulsive gambling is one of the most common factors leading to suicide. Think of how much you have to live for. Let love give you strength to do what you must in overcoming this. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Emotionally disturbed addict. I'm a recovering alcohol, crack, heroin and Valium addict, how to cope?
You need support: Few people, if anyone, can recover all on their own. There are self-help groups like aa/na and others, formal therapy groups that use cognitive behavioral therapy, individual psychotherapies and family/couples therapies. Work on improving health with diet and exercise, and develop other fulfilling activities and hobbies, religious and/or meditative practices. Treat underlying psychiatric problem. ...Read more
Strange world: Stoners have much less tendency to impulsive or simply mean violence than do drinkers, and do not have the cravings that drive crime in opiate, meth, or Cocaine addicts. But for whatever reason, cannabis is illegal; using it gets one involved with other lawbreakers. I believe generally in obeying laws even when i may disagree, and find life has much too much to offer to want to be goofy. Peace. ...Read more
No: To assess addiction, whether it's behavior or a substance we need to know how the addiction interfering with your life, whether you spend most of the day involved in addictive behavior. Any of these can lead to the loss of job, family, life-savings. Asking what is better, behavioral addiction or drug addictions is like asking what is better, prescription drug addiction or illegal drug addiction. ...Read moreSee 1 more doctor answer
Some involvement: There are a group of genes that have been shown to predispose people to be more likely to develop nicotine addiction if they choose to smoke, and the absence of all these genes appears to be more likely in those who are able to "chip" occasionally - smoke a cigarette here and there "socially," - and yet not get addicted. For most people, 7 cigarettes in life will predict tobacco dependency. ...Read more
Has anyone been able to control their moderate social anxiety / obsessive compulsive behavior with no drugs?
Treatment Options: Social anxiety and obsessive-compulsive disorder respond well to cognitive-behavioral therapy. Some patients can achieve 100% remission of their symptoms. Check with your physician or your local mental health association for a referral to a mental health professional who specializes in the non-psychopharmacologic treatment of these conditions. ...Read more
This often refers to repetitive behavior which is far in excess of useful purpose, which tends to cause high levels of anxiety if it is not completed and which interferes with functioning in one or more areas. Severely repetitive handwashing, rigidy putting things in order over and over, counting over and over, and rituals done to prevent some imagined ...Read more
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