Do you have bad habits that are controlling you?
Many people assume that we can only become addicted to substances that exert a physical effect on the body such as alcohol or drugs, but many activities can become addictions including gambling, shopping, using the internet, sex and toxic relationships.
When you engage in activities that make you feel happy – such as a shopping spree, winning a bet or having sex with someone new – your brain releases ‘feel-good’ chemicals that encourage you to repeat that behaviour because it provides such an enjoyable ‘high’. While we may find short term joy in some of these activities, there may also be long term associated harmful consequences as well. If seeking out this ‘high” has developed into compulsive and uncontrollable desire to engage with the activity despite warning signs of harmful consequences, you may be facing an addiction.
Regardless of what you are addicted to, the nature of addiction can take a toll on your physical and psychological health. Symptoms of addiction include (but are not limited to) depression, panic attacks, sleep disturbance, obsessive-compulsive traits, impulsive behaviour, deteriorating relationships, poor work performance, and escalating financial struggles.
What is addiction counselling, psychotherapy, and psychiatry?
Addiction counsellors are qualified to assess your behaviour, identify whether there is an addiction present and will suggest a treatment plan to help overcome it.
Therapy for addiction can help you to examine the underlying causes that precipitated the vicious cycle and identify any possible triggers that may lead to a relapse. It can also help you deal with any other psychological issues that may be attached to your addiction such as depression, low self-esteem or anxiety. Finally, it can guide those around you such as family and friends to better understand your addiction and learn how to support you during your recovery.
In certain circumstances, we may suggest consulting a psychiatrist to diagnose, monitor and treat any mental health issues arising from your addiction. Should rehabilitation be required, they will be able to make an appropriate referral.
What can we do at CDCS to help?
Our psychotherapists and psychiatrists work with all forms of addiction; we have particular specialists with extensive training and experience in drug and alcohol treatment, among other addictions.
If you decide to undergo a course of therapy to deal with your addiction, we will help identify the causes, and examine the thoughts, feelings, and behaviours that have contributed to it.
Together, they will empower you to gain crucial self-understanding and insight needed torecognise what triggers your desire to pursue your addiction, develop strategies to cope with trigger situations, and devise tailor-made methods of handling your withdrawal symptoms while you recover.