OTHER ADDICTIONS


The following conditions/additions are classified Addictions but are both mental and behavioral and with our ALL Mental health based program we are the foremost in Canada to deal with these Addictions most effectively.

Eating Disorders
Eating disorders are mental and behavioral conditions wherein a person eats abnormally, either restricting their diet or eating too much for their health. It is commonly believed that these mental illnesses are a problem of the white, middle- to -upper class female. However, they are not restricted to any one kind of person, and they completely transcend race, gender and social class.
Eating Disorders
There are multiple types of eating disorders, with each one being extremely dangerous to the physical and mental health of those who suffer it.
Kinds of Eating Disorders
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of mental Illnesses (DSM, the primary database for diagnosing mental/behavioral abnormalities) currently recognizes 4 types of eating disorders:
    • Anorexia Nervosa: unhealthy and unrealistic perception of weight and body, with an obsession with maintaining or losing weight. There are 2 types of anorexics:
      1. Restricting – restricting food and diet in order to lose weight
      2. Binging & Purging – loss or maintenance of weight through overeating (binging) and then purging (e.g. vomiting, laxatives)
    • Bulimia Nervosa: compulsive eating followed by purging, similar to binging and purging anorexic types, except bulimics’ body weights are not considered underweight (whereas anorexics’ are severely underweight)
    • Binge Eating: overeating on at least 2-3 occasions within a week, usually accompanied by eating-induced feelings of shames as well as sometimes obesity or weight problems
    • Otherwise-Specified Feeding or Eating Disorder: atypical instances of the above 3 disorders (e.g. an anorexic who is not underweight)
Eating & Other Mental Health Disorders
Abnormal eating habits may accompany other mental health conditions, whether substance abuse or mental illnesses such as depression and anxiety. Overeating is commonly used as a remedy to deal with feelings of depression, shame, anger, and anxiety. Eating disorders are also commonly associated with body dysmorphic disorder, in which a person’s view of their body is severely distorted and interferes with their life. About 15% of body dysmorphics have either bulimia or anorexia nervosa.
Eating disorders are extremely detrimental to a person’s health, both physically and mentally. Undereating (or binging/purging) restricts a person’s nutrition and therefore their access to vital vitamins, minerals and nutrients. This can lead to a whole host of problems, including immune system weakness, mental/development deficiencies, and cardiovascular problems. Overeating can also lead to obesity, diabetes, and heart diseases.
If you or a loved one may be suffering from an eating disorder, it is imperative to find help ASAP. Unattended, such disorders can cause permanent damage or even be deadly.
Gambling
Gambling addiction (sometimes called “ludomania” or referred to as “problem gambling”) is defined as a compulsive urge to gamble in spite of negative consequences. It is just as serious of an addictive disorder as alcoholism or substance abuse. As of 2013, Gambling has been recognized as an addiction rather than a disorder of impulsive behavior, which it was long assumed to be.
Gambling Addiction
Since problem gambling has been re-classified as an addiction, psychologists have re-evaluated how an individual is classified as a gambling addict. In order to be diagnosed with gambling addiction, one must have experienced four or more of the following 9 symptoms within a year:
    • Needs to constantly gamble with more money in order to feel the same level of pleasure/excitement
    • Any attempt to change gambling habits significantly affects mood
    • Has tried and failed to either cut back on gambling or stop altogether
    • Thinks obsessively about gambling when not partaking in it
    • Gambles to deal with other problems in life
    • Gambling escalates after losing money
    • Lies to hide gambling
    • Has experienced negative social consequences (e.g. losing a job, marriage, etc.)
    • Cannot financially sustain gambling habits on own, so must rely on others (through borrowing, stealing, etc.)
Gambling & Other Addictions
Gambling Addiction & Dual Diagnosis
Like other addictions, gambling addiction is also likely to accompany other mental and behavioral illnesses. The co-occurrence of addiction with such disorders is referred to as dual diagnosis, and gambling addicts are very often dually diagnosed. They are also commonly cross-addicts, which means they are addicted to both a substance (drugs or alcohol) and a behavior (gambling). A 2011 study reviewed the prevalence of mental disorders and substance addictions in pathological gamblers:
    • Over 60% were addicted to nicotine
    • Over 57% were addicted to drugs and/or alcohol
    • About 38% had mood disorders (bipolar, depression, etc.)
    • About 37% had anxiety disorders (generalized anxiety, obsessive-compulsive disorder, etc.)
Like many other cases of dual diagnosis, it is difficult to separate the mental disorder from gambling addiction. In order to qualify as a gambling addict, gambling must NOT be related to manic episodes experienced in bipolar disorder. It is also difficult to tell if addicts are replacing one addiction with another (e.g. giving up alcohol but taking up gambling).
As the list above makes clear, gambling compares quite similarly to substance addictions. For example, both gambling and drug addicts lie, steal and persist in their addictions in spite of the consequences. Both go through “withdrawal,” wherein the gambling addict becomes restless, irritable and discontented when not gambling.
The biological basis for gambling addiction is also not unlike other addictions. A study has found that gambling stimulates endorphins, the same area of the brain affected by most addictive drugs. Endorphins are naturally opiates created by the brain to give people pleasure, but behaviors like pathological gambling release too many endorphins and thus lead to addiction.
Sex Addictions
Sexual addiction is a condition in which an individual cannot manage their sexual behavior. Persistent sexual thoughts affect their ability to work, maintain relationships, and fulfil their daily activities.
Other terms for sexual addiction are sexual dependency, hypersexuality, and compulsive sexual behavior. It is also known as nymphomania in females and satyriasis in men.
While sexual addiction shares some features with substance addiction, the person is addicted to an activity, not a substance. Treatment may help, but without treatment, it may get worse.
Facts on Sexual Addiction
  • Sexual addiction prevents people from managing their sexual behavior. Why it happens is unclear.
  • It can have a severe impact on a person’s life, but key studies, have not yet established it as a diagnosable condition, but are referred to as disorders
  • Typical behaviors include compulsive masturbation, persistent use of pornography, exhibitionism, voyeurism, extreme acts of lewd sex, and the failure to resist sexual impulses.
What is Sexual Addiction?
Addiction is described as “a primary, chronic mental condition of brain reward, motivation, memory, and related circuitry.”
A person with sexual addiction is obsessed with sex or has an abnormally intense sex drive. Their thoughts are dominated by sexual activity, to the point where this affects other activities and interactions. If these urges become uncontrollable, the person can have difficulty functioning in social situations.
In some cases, a person with a healthy and enjoyable sex life may develop an obsession. They may find themselves stimulated by acts and fantasies that most people do not consider acceptable.
In some cases, the person may have a paraphilic disorder, such as pedophilia. This is a diagnosable disorder.
A paraphilic disorder involves sexual arousal caused by stimuli that most people do not find acceptable, for example pedophilia. It involves distress and dysfunction.
Symptoms
Some attempts to define the characteristics of sexual addiction have been based on literature about chemical dependency. Sexual addiction may share the same rewards systems and circuits in the brain as substance addiction.
However, people with sexual addiction may be addicted to different types of sexual behavior. This makes the condition harder to define. It also suggests that the disorder stems not from the individual acts, but rather an obsession with carrying them out.
Sexual addiction also appears to involve making rules to feel in control of the condition, and then breaking them to make new rules.
Activities associated with sexual addiction may include:
  • compulsive masturbation
  • multiple affairs, sexual partners, and one-night stands
  • persistent use of pornography
  • practicing unsafe sex
  • cybersex
  • visiting prostitutes or practicing prostitution
  • exhibitionism
  • voyeurism
Behaviors and attitudes may include:
  • an inability to contain sexual urges and respect the boundaries of others involved in the sexual act
  • detachment, in which the sexual activity does not emotionally satisfy the individual
  • obsession with attracting others, being in love, and starting new romances, often leading to a string of relationships
  • feelings of guilt and shame
  • an awareness that the urges are uncontrollable, in spite of financial, medical, or social consequences
  • a pattern of recurrent failure to resist impulses to engage in extreme acts of lewd sex
  • engagement in sexual behaviors for longer than intended, and to a greater extent
  • several attempts to stop, reduce, or control behavior
  • excessive time and energy spent obtaining sex, being sexual, or recovering from a sexual experience
  • giving up social, work-related, or recreational activities because of a sexual addiction
  • sexual rage disorder, where an individual becomes distressed, anxious, restless, and possibly violent if unable to engage in the addiction
Best Treatment
Intensive one on one Mental health and advanced therapy is required.
Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) provides a variety of techniques that help the individual change their behavior. CBT can equip a person to avoid relapses and reprogram harmful sexual behaviors.