Though the word “addiction” is most commonly associated with the chronic and compulsive use of illicit or harmful substances, it is actually a broad term that covers two distinct categories of addiction—substance addiction and behavioral addiction. Between these categories lay both substantial similarities and meaningful distinctions.
Shared Traits of Substance Addiction & Behavioral Addiction
Substance addiction and behavioral addiction both operate by causing an individual to become obsessed with either a substance, object, or activity. Sufferers of both types of addiction can and do experience symptoms of withdrawal should the subject of their obsession be made unavailable. As a result, people with either disease are often willing to go to extreme lengths to avoid the possibility of withdrawal.
Individuals with either type of addiction are likely to experience a lack of self-control; for example, an inability to quit the subject of their addiction despite their desire to do so. Denial is another symptom common to both types of addiction; individuals with a substance addiction or behavioral addiction are often unable to acknowledge their growing problems.
Differences Between Substance Addiction & Behavioral Addiction
The use, especially the chronic and compulsive use, of substances interacts with and alters the functioning of the human brain in a way that a behavioral addiction simply cannot. Substance addiction also carries great health risks and consequences than behavioral addiction.
While both types of addiction can result in significant harm and should be treated as early as possible, the distinct health risks posed by substance addiction demand a competent and professional treatment program.
The Asana Recovery Center offers and comprehensive substance addiction program in a supportive, relaxing, and inspiring environment. Call us today at (949) 438-4504 to learn more about our programs and facilities.