General Question

BronxLens's avatar

How do you stop an addiction?

Asked by BronxLens (1539points) June 8th, 2008

Excess consumption of liquor, drugs, food, watching porno, and even playing video games among others.

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13 Answers

arnbev959's avatar

You stop, suffer the withdrawal, and take care not to relapse.

Dog's avatar

It has to come from within- the desire and motivation to change.

Without the determination to change any effort will be short lived.

IF the passion to quit is there then there are many support groups out there for all types of addiction. Studies have proven that support groups are among the most successful ways to treat addictions.

Also educating yourself on WHY you became addicted will aid in your recovery. For instance what are you trying to achieve with the addictive action? (examples can range from numbing internal pain or avoiding an uncomfortable situation to making yourself feel good) You need to know your triggers and how to cure the problems that led you to the addiction in order to help treat it fully.

phoenyx's avatar

Get other people who care about you involved. It’s easier with help. Get out of situations where you’d be tempted (e.g. an alcoholic shouldn’t hang out a bar or with friends who drink). Find an alternate activity to the current behavior.

sndfreQ's avatar

Nice job phoenyx and Dog…very good advice. If the question is in reference to a personal bout with addiction, I just wanted to add that, don’t blame your self excessively or see it as a failure; in many cases, addiction is a reaction to extreme stress or out of anxiety, and is a natural part of life. Accept it for what it is-a challenge that must be overcome to improve your life (in some cases, to preserve life).

Remember, in some instances, addiction is hereditary and passed down in genes. Seek the knowledge to empower yourself, and don’t feel like you have to suffer through it alone. Good luck, if you set your mind to it, anything is possible.

St.George's avatar

The 12 steps are a pretty popular /successful method. That and a good therapist.

DeezerQueue's avatar

It’s also not a bad idea to seek professional help, if possible. Make a plan to get yourself going, with reasonable goals. As already stated, a desire must be there, if you’re doing it to appease others, this includes going as far as attending support groups, there is less chance of success. The person with the addiction has to want it and has to be ready for it. It takes some soul searching before an addiction is beat, there needs to be an understanding of how and why the addictions were developed in the first place.

If a person has a dual diagnosis then it’s exceedingly wise to get professional help. Many people who have clinical depression will turn to the object of addiction because it makes them feel better, and when the addiction is then developed and can be diagnosed, it’s a dual diagnosis (the first being the depression, the second being the addiction). A person may have a better chance of beating their addiction if they can get properly medicated for the primary diagnosis.

A support group or therapy at the same time is helpful because when the individual with the addiction begins to face some of the other problems that may have arisen during the addiction (e.g., relationship, financial) they’re going to need some help in dealing with those issues without turning back to the addiction, or even developing a new one. Those problems don’t miraculously vanish the moment a person starts dealing with an addiction.

When I write “you” I’m speaking generally, not personally.

fabulous's avatar

With pleanty of support from friends and family

nocountry2's avatar

New routines. You want to play a video game? Have to take a 15 minute walk first. Want a drink? Have to call a family member or friend and catch up. Want some food? Keep only basic ingredients so you have to make it from scratch. Need to watch some porn? Try watching a comedy show first. Vizualize what your perfect life looks like for two minutes before you go to bed each night. And do something kind (not indulgent) for yourself every day. Making an effort to take care of yourself will naturally increase your self-respect. You can totally do this.

DeezerQueue's avatar

It all sounds so simple, doesn’t it, giving this advice, when we’re not the ones who have the addictions.

Who else thinks that some are addicted to food? I believe that food addiction (using food to self medicate) is one of the underlying causes for obesity in America and other parts of the world. There are, of course, other reasons, but I think self medicating is one of the biggest.

BronxLens's avatar

All great answers – thank you everybody.

I’m aiming to be certified in Creative Arts Therapy (CAT), and while waiting for the semester to begin have been doing some complementary reading. Among the key uses for CAT (one being to help people to recover from psychological traumas) is also helping to recover from addictions which led me to ‘tap the collective’ to see what else was out there methods and sources-wise. Thanks for the input.

DeezerQueue's avatar

I just took a peek at the link you provided. It’s true that behavior modification is part of the addiction recovery process. In fact, it’s probably one of the positive factors in overcoming addiction, to replace the bad behavior with positive behavior.

Based on conversations with my husband over the years (who worked in addictions up until a couple of months ago) men are more resistant to these sorts of programs. They tend to respond better to a “plan” approach that is goal-oriented.

Breefield's avatar

Find a new addiction.

fabulous's avatar

You cant replace one addiction with another you need to focus on cutting out the addiction you have as hard as it is going to be to stop. Willpower is the main key unlock that and you are on the road to recovery.

Good Luck :)

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