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Doctor insights on: What Is An Addictive Personality

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Dr. Timothy Re
Board Certified, Clinical Psychology
26 years in practice
390K people helped
1

1
Is there any such thing as an addictive personality?

Dr. Timothy Re
Board Certified, Clinical Psychology
26 years in practice
390K people helped
Is there any such thing as an addictive personality?

Not technically: Addictive personality is not officially a clinical term but has been used anecdotally for years. It perhaps describes the extremely high comorbidity and some predisposing factors behind addictions. ...Read more

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Dr. Rashed Hasan
Board Certified
29 years in practice
624K people helped
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Dr. Rashed Hasan
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29 years in practice
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Dr. Vasu Brown
610 doctors shared insights

Addiction (Definition)

Addiction is a condition in which a person has a strong, persistent physical and psychological need for a habit-forming substance (such as alcohol, cigarettes, or cocaine) or an activity (such as gambling). The person usually suffers physical or psychological withdrawal symptoms if he is unable to continue getting what ...Read more


Dr. Allen Fein
Board Certified, Family Medicine
252K people helped
2

2
I have an addictive personality. How can I avoid falling into any traps?

Dr. Allen Fein
Board Certified, Family Medicine
252K people helped
I have an addictive personality.  How can I avoid falling into any traps?

Awareness / Control: The fact that you are already well aware of your vulnerability is very important in getting the upper hand of long issues, including addiction. Other steps to take include meeting with a counsellor or a psychologist to work out a variety of defense strategies - so that the inevitable exposures to your object of addiction can be anticipated with healthy responses. Antidepressants might be given. ...Read more

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Dr. Rashed Hasan
Board Certified
29 years in practice
624K people helped
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Dr. Rashed Hasan
Board Certified
29 years in practice
624K people helped
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Dr. Alan Wartenberg
Board Certified, Addiction Medicine
44 years in practice
6M people helped
3

3
Is there truly something known as an addictive personality?

Dr. Alan Wartenberg
Board Certified, Addiction Medicine
44 years in practice
6M people helped
Is there truly something known as an addictive personality?

Not really: There are psychiatric conditions, such as bipolar disorder, where substance use disorders are more common, there is really no one particular personality type associated with having addictions. That being said, a lot of people who develop addictions will develop them to a lot of things - alcohol, drugs, compulsive shopping, dangerous behaviors etc. People who are impulsive&take risks more likely. ...Read more

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Dr. Lawrence Smith
Board Certified, Clinical Psychology
25 years in practice
3M people helped
4

4
Is it actually possible to have an addictive personality?

Dr. Lawrence Smith
Board Certified, Clinical Psychology
25 years in practice
3M people helped
Is it actually possible to have an addictive personality?

Not exactly: There is no official diagnosis of addictive personality disorder. There are, however, personality traits and styles that increase a person's vulnerability to becoming substance dependent or developing impulse-control disorders, such as pathological gambling. Many people persist in activities they enjoy--this is not addiction. ...Read more

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Dr. Rashed Hasan
Board Certified
29 years in practice
624K people helped
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Dr. Alan Ali
Board Certified, Psychiatry
27 years in practice
177M people helped
5

5
Is there such thing as an addictive personality?

Dr. Alan Ali
Board Certified, Psychiatry
27 years in practice
177M people helped

Addictive personalit: Sure. It is a trait that makes someone predisposed to addiction, such as substance abuse, food, gambling, exercise, pornography, work exercise addiction, or codependency. They display impulsive behaviors, nonconformity, sense of social alienation. They lack self-esteem & are very sensitive to stress. ...Read more

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Dr. Pamela Pappas
Board Certified, Psychiatry
37 years in practice
135M people helped
6

6
Is it possible to have an addictive personality for sex?

Dr. Pamela Pappas
Board Certified, Psychiatry
37 years in practice
135M people helped
Is it possible to have an addictive personality for sex?

Sex addiction: One can use sexual behavior compulsively and repeatedly with a succession of lovers to modulate emotions, rather than to relate intimately. Behavior is out of control, despite attempts to stop it; there are adverse consequences in medical, legal, and interpersonal areas. Escalating need for sexual activity, and lots of time spent in getting this -- fantasy, pornography, cyber-sex too. ...Read more

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Dr. Timothy Re
Board Certified, Clinical Psychology
26 years in practice
390K people helped
7

7
Can you test to see if someone has an addictive personality?

Dr. Timothy Re
Board Certified, Clinical Psychology
26 years in practice
390K people helped
Can you test to see if someone has an addictive personality?

Not Formally: This is a term that has been around a long time but is not recognised formally in the psychiatric literature. What is often a focus of treatment and psychological testing is the precursors, history, and manifestations of addiction. There are personality factors that also predispose oneto ddeveloping an addiction. ...Read more

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Dr. Vikas Duvvuri
Board Certified, Psychiatry
11 years in practice
524K people helped
8

8
Do women have a much more addictive personality than men?

Dr. Vikas Duvvuri
Board Certified, Psychiatry
11 years in practice
524K people helped
Do women have a much more addictive personality than men?

See below: Scientific evidence does not support "a much more addictive personality" in women. The usual data looks at how many people (men or women) are dependent on drugs. In alcohol dependence there has been a gender gap, ie more men. But dependence is a mixture of nature and nurture so this has yet to be resolved. ...Read more

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Dr. Pamela Pappas
Board Certified, Psychiatry
37 years in practice
135M people helped
9

9
How is addictive personality disorder treated?

Dr. Pamela Pappas
Board Certified, Psychiatry
37 years in practice
135M people helped
How is addictive personality disorder treated?

With care: "addictive personality disorder" does not exist in the dsm-iv. But addiction itself is best treated in a comprehensive program involving mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual care. Some personality patterns may lead to difficulty, which can be dealt with in personal therapy. 12-step programs are also helpful in addressing common issues. The whole program is much larger than this, though. ...Read more

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Dr. Alan Wartenberg
Board Certified, Addiction Medicine
44 years in practice
6M people helped
10

10
I'm very sensitive and emotional. I also feel I have an addictive personality to substances, or perhaps it could be an oral fixation?

Dr. Alan Wartenberg
Board Certified, Addiction Medicine
44 years in practice
6M people helped
I'm very sensitive and emotional. I also feel I have an addictive personality to substances, or perhaps it could be an oral fixation?

Beats me: An answer to your question requires a full medical and psychiatric history, and lots of questions about your growing up, your experiences, your reactions to those experiences. These questions need a therapist who spends the time with you and gains enough of your trust to give you some answers. Freud's oral theories really arent believed anymore. No quick answer is gonna help you. Get a referral. ...Read more

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Dr. Rashed Hasan
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