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Doctor insights on: What Is The Difference Between Physical And Psychological Addiction

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What is the difference between physical and psychological addiction?

What is the difference between physical and psychological addiction?

Addiction: Physical addiction or dependence is when chronic use of a substance results in tolerance, and when abrupt discontinuation or tapering of the substance results in unpleasant withdrawal symptoms. The person shows physiological craving for the substance.
Psychological dependence is feeling the need for the substance because it induces enjoyable mental effects. ...Read more

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Dr. Vasu Brown
612 Doctors shared insights

Addiction (Definition)

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


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What is the difference between a psychological addiction and a physiological addiction?

What is the difference between a psychological addiction and a physiological addiction?

Addiction: When a heroin addict quits cold turkey, the pain that he feels in being "dope sick" is beyond description in agony. This is an example of physical addiction. When the physical symptoms finally pass, but the feeling of still needing the heroin in order to live remains, that is psychological addiction. ...Read more

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Is addiction a physical disease or a psychological one?

Is addiction a physical disease or a psychological one?

Both: Addiction to any substance implies that the body has not only become physically habituated to it, but a behavior change has also happened. Rather than using the substance sporadically, now the person pursues the substance and continues using it despite overt harm to his/her own life, relationships, and career. Tolerance has developed, and the person needs more for same effect. ...Read more

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Could a psychological addiction cause physical withdrawal symptoms?

Could a psychological addiction cause physical withdrawal symptoms?

Yes: Imho there is no such thing as a "pure" physical or psychological addiction. The mind and body are tied together, and anything that effects one will impact the other. ...Read more

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Can psychological addiction be cured? If so, how? Or will the need to use be there forever?

Can psychological addiction be cured? If so, how? Or will the need to use be there forever?

There is no "cure": For addiction. With ongoing therapy and counseling one can "control" their addiction and not use. Support groups like AA or NA or for whatever addiction you may have are a good place to receive nonjudgmental help. A sponsor will give added support and help. If presented the opportunity to use you may be tempted that is where the sponsor may be a big help. I hope this is of some help. ...Read more

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Which addiction is more difficult to deal with: mental or psychological dependence?

Which addiction is more difficult to deal with: mental or psychological dependence?

The same: Mental or psychological dependence are essentially the same. You might mean physiological rather than psychological. Physiological involves bodily functions to include heart rate, blood pressure, shakiness, and other changes. When people are physiologically dependent, they may feel those bodily changes without a clear psychological/mental need/addiction. Addiction relates to mental/psychological. ...Read more

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Can I have a dexedrine (dextroamphetamine) psychological addiction?

Possible: Would need to know more about what you are experiencing, but some people really like the sense of mood elevation and mental sharpness that Dexedrine (dextroamphetamine) can induce in some (not all) individuals. Losing that "edge" can be uncomfortable, so you go back to the medication to get it back, sometimes needing higher and higher doses to do so. ...Read more

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What is a dexedrine (dextroamphetamine) psychological addiction like?

What is a dexedrine (dextroamphetamine) psychological addiction like?

Addiction=addiction: A harmful pattern of use characterized by using more of the substance than intended, persistent desire or unsuccessful attempts to cut down or stop using, significant periods of time spent using or obtaining the substance at the expense of other major life responsibilities, and continuing to use despite the knowledge of adverse effects. Psychological would imply no tolerance for withdrawal. ...Read more

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What sort of psychological disorder or drug addiction/withdrawal leads to unreasonable anger in people?

What sort of psychological disorder or drug addiction/withdrawal leads to unreasonable anger in people?

Many disorders: Many psychological disorders can have anger as a symptom. Careful evaluation is needed. For instance bipolar disorder and add can both have anger manifestation but are treated with very different medications. Most additive drugs can cause anger during the withdrawal period and thus slow. Withdrawal is needed. ...Read more

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What is the difference between physical dependence vs addiction?

Very little: I believe we are splitting hairs. Same thing. If you are physically dependent, that describes the hallmark of addiction. Hope this helps.
Whatever you wish to call it, get help yesterday. Talk with your doctor the day before. ...Read more

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What is the difference between mental and physical addiction?

What is the difference between mental and physical addiction?

Often together: The 2 of these often come together. "addiction" signifies a behavioral pattern of using a substance despite obvious harm to the person's life, work, and relationships. They use more than intended; lie about using; and spend lots of time using it. Physical habituation (having withdrawal symptoms when missing dose) can happen without addiction, but may come with mental/behavioral patterns as above. ...Read more

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What is the difference between a physical addiction and physiological addiction?

Definitions: I believe you are interchanging physical addiction with dependence which generally means that the removal of the subject will cause some type of withdrawal syndrome possibly even seizures for example. Addiction itself is a complex process that involves some activity or substance use along with adverse consequences such as criminal activity or harm to others or your relationship with others. ...Read more

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Can you explain to me the difference between mental and physical addiction - if there is one?

Can you explain to me the difference between mental and physical addiction - if there is one?

Often together: The 2 of these often come together. "addiction" signifies a behavioral pattern of using a substance despite obvious harm to the person's life, work, and relationships. They use more than intended; lie about using; and spend lots of time using it. Physical habituation (having withdrawal symptoms when missing dose) can happen without addiction, but may come with mental/behavioral patterns as above. ...Read more

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Is watching porn addictive and does it affect us in negative ways? If so, would it affect us biologically or just psychologically, say through guilt?

Is watching porn addictive and does it affect us in negative ways? If so, would it affect us biologically or just psychologically, say through guilt?

Sometimes: For some people, watching porn is one of many aspects of their sexual expression. They are not driven toward it, although they may frequently enjoy it. For others, watching porn becomes a compulsive activity which is addictive in nature and accompanied by guilt. While experienced psychologically, some evidence suggests that addiction is biologically based. However, this is not clear cut. ...Read more

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What about the stories of addiction surrounding opiates? Is there a difference between physical dependence and addiction?

Yes: Physical dependence involves use to avoid withdrawal both physiologic and substance dependent without compulsive, lack of control behavior. You can have dependence without addiction. ...Read more

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