Addictions-What Is Addictive?
Addiction is described in Wikipedia as an obsession, compulsion, or excess physical dependence or psychological dependence upon something. There are of course physically addictive substances such as the opiates (heroin, morphine, codeine, ect) as well as cocaine, alcohol, tobacco, caffeine, and prescription drugs (percocet, oxycodone, hydrocodone, vicodin, ect.) The list goes on and on, if you can become addicted, well somebody probably has.
There are psychological addictions as well, including, but certainly not limited too: marijuana, overeating, under-eating, and even things like video games, porn, computers, gambling, and this list 0f course, goes on and on also.
An addiction, whether physical or psychological is a recurring compulsion to engage in some specific activity, despite harmful consequences to an individual, possibly affecting his health, mental state, livelihood, well being, or social life.
Addictions can come in many shapes and sizes. You can be addicted to meth or heroin and be a junkie, just living life to get to your next “fix”. Or you can feel as though you’re addicted to Big Macks and just can’t wait to have another one. No matter what your addiction, it can be broken, you can learn to live your life without it, no matter what “it” is!
Signs Of Addiction
How do you know if you’re addicted to something? What are the signs of addiction? The fact that you or someone you know needs to have a particular drug or substance, or engage in a specific activity on a continual basis is of course the most obvious sign of an addiction. There are however many more subtle signs an addictive person can exhibit such as:
- Mood swings (anxiety, anger, depression, ect)
- The continuous use of drugs or alcohol as a way of escaping reality or life’s problems
- Loss of interest in activities that use to be important
- Changes in sleeping habits
- Changes in eating habits, including either weight loss or gain
- Difficulty concentrating on day to day tasks
- Relationships or friendships deteriorating
- Personal hygiene deteriorating
- You find yourself constantly thinking about your addictive substance or behavior
How To Overcome Physical And/Or Psychological Addictions
First and foremost is- a STRONG desire for change! If you don’t personally want to change your behavior, or in other words you only want to change to please someone else, or think it’s the right thing to do, ect. you could be doomed to failure! You need to want to change deep down inside, to be committed to making this change happen, and take the necessary steps to ensure that it does.
Overcoming a physical addiction is never easy! Your body will want whatever substance you have become addicted to, be it tobacco, caffeine, alcohol, cocaine, heroin, whatever. Addiction is addiction whether it’s psychological or physical, but with a physical addiction you will have to battle both the physical (your body needing the substance to feel “normal”) and the psychological addiction of your mind telling you that you need the addictive substance also!
Addictions-no matter how strong-can be overcome! Everyone knows somebody that has overcome an addiction. I personally have stopped using tobacco, and over the years have stopped using caffeine on more than one occasion. I have friends and relatives that have overcome addictions to tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, pills, cocaine, and even heroin-there is no addiction that cannot be overcome! You need to believe in yourself and believe in the fact that you deserve something better in your life.
Overcoming Addictions-Things You Can Do That May Help You Stop Your Addictive Behaviors
I’m not going to pretend I have all the answers to breaking your addiction. You are the only one who has all the answers, actually! I will however, give you some proven techniques that may help you break a bad habit or overcome an addiction:
- Leave the Environment-Change your patterns. If you patronize bars, but want to stop drinking and smoking, stop going to the bars! If at lunch-time you always set at the table of smokers, but want to quit, eat somewhere else. You may need to change the friends you hang out with. Do what you need to do (at least temporarily) to alleviate the temptation as much as possible.
- Wait for the Cravings to Pass-Occupy your mind, keep busy, don’t dwell on what you’re craving. Take a walk, get things you’ve been putting off done, be strong, don’t give in! Take it one day at a time, the cravings will weaken and eventually go away.
- Remember Why You Want to Quit! Always keep in mind the reasons you want/need to quit. If it’s smoking you’re trying to quit, think about the bad breath, smelly clothes, unattractiveness, expense, and the “smokers hack” you’ve had to put up with. When thoughts of your habit/addiction cross your mind associate all the “negative aspects” of that habit/addiction.
- Substitute Something Healthy in Place of Your Addiction-If you’re trying to stop overeating-substitute healthy foods instead of giving-in to the Twinkies. If you’re trying to stop smoking try chewing gum instead. If trying to stop drinking alcohol try one of the non-alcohol beers instead.
- If You do Give-In, Consider it a Temporary Set-Back and Stop Again with a Renewed Determination! If you give-in to temptation and smoke a cigarette, or eat that Twinky, don’t feel like you’ve lost the war-you haven’t! Think again of all the reasons you have for quiting and stop all over again! It will take patients, perseverance, and the knowledge that you can and will overcome this thing that has had ahold of you.
- Look to a Higher Power-Have Faith-You can gain an incredible amount of strength by believing in a Spiritual Power that’s bigger then yourself! It really doesn’t matter whose “God” you choose to believe in, just let Him take some of the burden off of you. Prayer can give results, I’ve seen it too many times!
- You are not alone! Thousands of others have battled the same behaviors/addictions in the past. Involve your friends and/or family in your recovery. Find someone else who also wants to quit, gain strength from each other. Don’t try to do this alone!
- Look within yourself! Many times as you gain control of your addictions, feelings (sometimes pushed back and not thought about for years) can come to the surface. Spend some time in introspection, try to understand any feelings and emotions that may come up, learn to accept yourself, learn to love yourself!
- Seek Qualified Help-Seek professional help to overcome your addiction. If you are unable to stop your addictive behaviors on your own, seek professional help! Life is short, don’t spend it doing something you don’t want to do anymore.
- Take Care Of Yourself-Practice living a healthy lifestyle, eat healthy foods, get plenty of sleep, take a good multi-vitamin, exercise daily, ect. learn to take good care of yourself!
Mind Control Techniques-To Help Break Your Addictions
- Cognative Behavior Therapy
- Visualization-Positive Affirmations
- Practice Positive Thinking
- Practice Deep Breathing-Relaxation Techniques
Herbs And Supplements That Can Help You Overcome An Addiction
- Passion Flower-Can help you relax if need be.
- Homeopathic Opium-Can help lessen cravings.
- Valerian-Can help calm the nerves while detoxing.
- Scullcap-Can help with nerves, headaches, and associated symptoms.
- St John’s Wort-Natures Prozac-can help relax you and help get your mind off your unwanted behaviors.
- Milk Thistle-Helps with the detoxification of the liver.
- L-Glutamine and Chromium-Helps reduce or even eliminate cravings.
- Oatstraw-Is helpful for opiate addictions.
- Ginseng-Used for centuries to help cleanse and detoxify.
- Black Cohosh-Helpful with nicotine addiction.
- Kudzu Vine-Helpful in treating alcoholism.
- Iodine-Be sure to get enough, helps balance hormonal levels.
- Lobelia-Helpful to kick the nicotine habit.
- D-Phenylaanine-An amino-acid that could be lacking in an addicted person.
- L-Tyrosine and L-Tryptophan-Two more needed amino-acids.
No matter what your addiction may be, think about joining a support group. Google it, as there are support groups for just about any kind of addiction. The support you receive can be the difference between success and failure! The value of having somebody else to talk to who has been down the road you’re walking is immeasurable. We here at Natures Cures want just that for you a CURE for your addiction! Remember no addiction is incureable!
If you are unable to stop your addictive behaviors, seek professional help! As I said before life is too short to be a slave to any substance or behavior. Believe in yourself, know that you have the strength within you to overcome your addiction, try everything and stick to what works for you. Be consistent and persistent in you efforts and you will succeed!
Articles About Addictions
Here are some resources to help you ‘kick’ your habit:
Here is addition information on various addictions. Hover over product for a description.