Many people who struggle with addiction feel that their struggles come from having an addictive personality.
Addictive personalities are blamed for many famous overdoses or drug abuse epidemics. But many scientists agree that the idea of an addictive personality is somewhat mythical, there aren’t specific personality traits that make up an addictive personality. For example, only 18% of addicts have personality disorders that involve lying, stealing, or manipulative behavior.1
Still, there are many personality traits associated with a higher risk of developing problems like addiction, alcoholism, or dual diagnosis disorders. These traits may be referred to as addictive personality traits, but an addictive personality is not a psychological diagnosis. Instead, each of these challenges may be diagnosed and treated on their own or together along with their influence on a person’s propensity for addiction.
Common Addictive Personality TraitsWhile it’s true that the diagnosis of an addictive personality is a myth, there are addictive personality traits that can be identified and treated. These traits, when untreated, may contribute to the development of addiction, alcoholism, or dual diagnosis disorders.
Addictive personality traits include:
- Impulsivity or bad self-control
- Anxiety and depression
- Large patterns of risk-taking behavior
- Manifestation of anxiety, such as a skin picking disorder
There are some addictive personality traits that are especially common in women and these include paralyzing inhibitions or sadness. 1 Always wanting more or frequent obsessive thoughts and behaviors are also common addictive personality traits among men and women. 2
How to Overcome Addictive Personality TraitsLiving with an addictive personality or addictive personality traits involves a healthy amount of introspection and self-reflection to monitor and address any problems. The first thing you should do if you have addictive personality traits is identify which actions in your life are dictated by those traits.
Common addictive personality behaviors include:
- Overeating or comfort eating
- Using drugs or alcohol
- Engaging in risk-taking behavior that puts you or others in real danger
- Obsessing over certain people, places, or things
- Shopping as a form of therapy
Overcoming an addictive personality involves identifying the root cause of the behaviors or obsessions and treating them through therapy programs. At Banyan Heartland, we offer therapy programs to help treat addictive personality traits.
Living with an addictive personality is not impossible, you can stay on track in sobriety and with healthy habits, even if you have addictive personality traits. At Banyan Heartland, we offer drug and alcoholism treatment program paths that can help address all aspects of an addictive personality. Call 888-280-4763 to learn more about our programs at Banyan Heartland.
Call 888-280-4763 to learn more about our treatment options and support programs.
- Scientific American – The Addictive Personality Isn’t What You Think it Is
- Mayo Clinic – Do you have addictive personality traits?