Recent research has revealed that drugs are not the only things that we can become addicted to. Anything that affects the brain and alters its chemistry can become habit-forming. Some emotions and activities can be just as addictive as cocaine or heroin. People get addicted to things such as anger and rage, falling in love, self-injury or self-harm, and exercise.
All of these activities have one thing in common – they release “feel-good” or pleasure chemicals in the brain, also known as endorphins.
Dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin, norepinephrine, and other endorphins make us feel “high” or better than we otherwise would (most drugs work primarily with dopamine). It’s the artificial rush of these chemicals that lead to addiction in any form.
We don’t become addicted to substances, activities, or behaviors, per se. We become addicted to the chemicals in our own bodies that they produce. These chemicals originate in the brain where they can affect other parts of the body via the spinal cord and the rest of the central nervous system.
Other Kinds of Addicts
Yes, there is such thing as a “rage-acholic.” This is one reason why anger management support groups have become popular.
There is such thing as a love addict – someone who craves the intense rush of endorphins experienced during the first few months of being involved in a romantic relationship with another person.
And many of us probably know someone who is a fitness addict. They might hit the gym every day of the week and be seemingly obsessed with health, fitness, diet, and the physical appearance of their body.
But none of these people are addicted only to the behaviors they compulsively engage in. They’re also addicted to endorphins.
No matter your “drug of choice,” Asana Recovery is here to help. Reach out to us today for the tools you need to get and stay sober.