How Does Addiction Begin?

How Does Addiction Begin?Something can be described as an addiction if it’s causing problems in your life but you keep doing it anyway. No one plans to become an addict. For some Californians, addiction begins after a legitimate illness or prescription. For others, addiction begins after a trauma or loss. Other times, an addiction is an escape route, the light at the end of the tunnel, or a way of drowning their personal problems instead of coping with them. How does this start?

Signs and Causes of Addiction in California Residents

First of all, we must know that addiction, abuse, and habit are different things. A habit is done by choice, there is no physical or psychological component and it can be stopped successfully, at will, at any time. Someone might be abusing a substance, such as alcohol, and still be able to stop without the compulsion to return to it. The addicted or dependent person simply cannot stop. There are mental and physical conditions that can no longer be controlled, usually causing serious problems.

An addiction begins when habitual abuse of a substance becomes a physical compulsion – something that we can’t stop doing without help. We may start a habit out of curiosity, peer pressure, or as a means of escape. Sometimes troublesome memories, anxiety, or depression cause people to use or repeat temporarily comforting behaviors.

When the abuse of a substance or activity creates a physiological or psychological dependence, the causes of addiction appear – tolerance and withdrawal. Tolerance means that as abuse continues, the body needs larger amounts of the substance to achieve the original effects. Withdrawal means that whenever the body stops receiving the same amount of the substance, or the provision is discontinued, physical and psychological symptoms appear, such as the following:

  • Intense cravings
  • Tremors
  • Headaches
  • Hallucinations
  • Irritability
  • Anxiety

The effects of withdrawal are sometimes so unpleasant that the person feels the intense need to come back to the addiction.

Some sings of addiction that Californians should look out for are:

  • Attempts to stop are unsuccessful
  • Excess consumption
  • Obsession
  • Continued use despite consequences
  • Withdrawal symptoms
  • Financial problems
  • The need to keep a hefty supply
  • Relationship problems
  • Denial

Understanding Addiction

To really understand the causes of addiction, we need to discuss who becomes addicted, and why. As pointed out earlier, it may start with the need to fit in. Peer pressure can be the reason a Californian might start the habit of using some kind of drug as a form of recreation, leading to an addiction. But this is not the only cause.

Sometimes addiction results from childhood trauma or abuse. Sometimes domestic violence, injuries, war experiences or loss contribute to addiction. Studies also show that addictive traits are inherited and new brain studies are revealing that people who are prone to addiction have actual physical causes of dependence and craving.

Another factor is mental illness. A Californian suffering from anxiety, depression, ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), bipolar disorder, and others conditions, are more likely to become addicted to drugs, alcohol, or nicotine.

There are many other factors about why someone might enter into an addiction, but the important thing is that it is not a lost cause. No one is doomed. Just as every person is different, every addiction is as well.

Help is Available to Successfully Overcome an Addiction

The truth is that finding a sympathetic ear is always refreshing. We should not feel that no one understands us or that there is no way out. If you or someone you care about in California is struggling with an addiction, our addiction helpline is there to help you recover. We want nothing more than to help you find the best treatments and show our support along the way. Our helpline is toll-free and we’re available 24 hours a day. You don’t have to be a prisoner of an addiction, you have the means to let yourself free and we can show you how. So give us a call and get your life back now.

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