Addictions of any kind are very difficult problems to overcome. Whether you need help with Substance Abuse, an Eating Disorder or any sort of behavioral addiction, before recovery can begin, addicts need to understand that addictions are devices of the mind created by the addict to be used for a real purpose.
The addict uses his or her addiction as a tool to avoid uncomfortable or painful feelings and, ultimately, to avoid reality. In order for the recovery process to begin, the addict must admit that he (she) has lost control of the very device that he (she) created! He (she) is no longer controlling the device, but rather the device is controlling him (her).
There are basically two kinds of addictions, substance addiction and behavioral addictions. Substance addictions include alcohol, drugs, sugar or other foods. Behavioral addictions include codependency, anorexia, bulimia, gambling, spending, shopping, television watching, gadget use (Internet/cell phones/text messaging), or any other behavior that becomes an obsession.
Cross over between substance and behavioral addictions exist with anorexia and bulimia, compulsive overeating and binge eating.
Statistics on the “newer” behavioral addictions such as text messaging and internet use are staggering! According to social_brand_value.com (a website dedicated to compiling research data on Internet addiction), one in eight Americans suffer from internet addiction which has been defined as six or more hours of non-essential internet use per day. These numbers indicate that 12% of the American population is addicted to escaping from life’s challenges via the Internet!