The 9 most common types of addictions
There are many types of addictions: drugs, sex, gambling, food, or mobile.
From a strict point of view, addictions are defined as alterations of brain function by which the person compulsively seeks a type of pleasant stimulus despite the negative consequences that this behavior has on daily life or health, in general, with a lack of effective control over their own behavior.
The case of drug addictions is the most paradigmatic of this kind of psychological disorder because it involves obvious physiological components, but there are also many types of behavioral addictions without the involvement of an addictive substance, such as addiction to games and video games, mobile or shopping.
Dependence on a drug implies the appearance of withdrawal symptoms when the consumption of the substance is interrupted. The concept “addiction”, on the other hand, does not necessarily require physiological dependence, but rather focuses on compulsive drug use or on other types of compulsive behavior.
Common types of addictions
In all likelihood, addictions to alcohol and other drugs have been relatively common throughout much of human history. This may also be the case for some behavioral addictions, such as addiction to sex or food. On the other hand, new types of addictions associated with new technologies have emerged in recent years. We refer to addiction to mobile phones, social networks, the Internet in general, or video games, among others.
Drug addictions are very common worldwide, although the relative frequency of each substance varies according to the population. Tobacco, alcohol, cocaine, and cannabis addiction are some of the most common types of drug addictions.
Mobile, Internet and social networks
Mobile addiction is extremely common in teens and young people today. It is associated with addiction to social networks and the Internet, the latter common in people of any age. It is important to understand that the generalization of the use of the Internet and other new technologies has changed the rules of social life, so that sometimes it can be difficult to judge what is an addiction and what is a consequence of a change in the way of relating.
The appearance of nervousness and anxiety when you cannot access the Internet or mobile are signs of the presence of an addiction, although the management of this type of “withdrawal syndrome” is not as problematic in behavioral addictions as it is in drug addictions, which generate physiological as well as psychological dependence.\
Pathological gambling is the only behavioral addiction reported in psychological manuals, as well as the most frequent in adults, probably; However, addiction to slot machines and other similar games is also quite common in teens.
Addiction to video games
Video game addiction is another of the most frequent types of addictions in adolescents. It is a combination of addictions to new technologies and pathological gambling (and in fact, it can be an equivalent expense since many video games allow endless payments, although it can also pose fewer problems in this regard).
The concept of “food addiction” is related to binge eating, bulimia, obesity, and other disorders associated with eating behavior. People addicted to food show signs such as rapid weight gain, eating alone and hidden, eating food very quickly, or stomach pain caused by binge eating.
Food and drink with a lot of sugar can cause addiction, deserving a special mention in food addictions for its association with diabetes mellitus and other medical disorders. Soft drinks with sugar, industrial pastries, or sweets are three examples of addictive stimuli of this type.
Work addiction (also called “workaholism”) is not included in the clinical psychology classifications, although it could be diagnosed when the person’s work activity becomes excessively priority and affects other areas, such as social relationships and physical health. In particular, working too actively for too long without rest can cause problems related to stress and physiological hyperactivation, such as heart attacks.
Shopping addiction consists of a lack of control regarding compulsive shopping for objects that are not necessary. It is another of the most common behavioral addictions and can seriously affect the affected people and their homes economically.
Addiction to exercise or sports is related to the pleasant sensations that physical activity causes in the body. Although exercising frequently is healthy, when sports interfere with daily life, it can become an addictive problem.