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The physical side of drug and alcohol abuse has been studied for centuries so there is an enormous amount of research surrounding the physical effects of substance abuse. The physical toll that addiction can have on a person is common knowledge; however, despite how debilitating substance abuse can be, people still engage in drug and alcohol abuse. Why? Our drug and alcohol treatment center in Chicago knows that addiction has just as much to do with the mind as it does with the body, and that’s why we’re looking into the psychology behind addiction.
The term “psychology” refers to behavioral processes that relate to mood, emotions, or the mind. Psychological dependence has to do with the emotional and mental processes that relate to the development and recovery from a substance abuse disorder or addiction. Our moods and behaviors take root in the mind. When you begin to use drugs or alcohol, the way you think and feel changes. Once a person becomes accustomed to experiencing certain thoughts and moods while high, their minds become just as addicted as their bodies. The psychological aspect of addiction is just as serious as physical dependency. The two do not exist separate from each other but are rather intertwined to create an overall addiction.
Our cognitive behavioral therapy in Chicago focuses on the psychology behind addiction by helping patients realize the emotions and thought patterns associated with their substance abuse disorder. CBT is one of the several addiction therapies we offer at Banyan Treatment Centers Chicago.
Emotion plays a big role in substance abuse. People may turn to drugs or alcohol to cope with negative emotions and they may associate certain positive emotions with these substances. Psychological dependence is largely referred to as the cognitive and emotional aspects of addiction or withdrawal from drugs and alcohol. Rather than the body’s physical change as a result of drug abuse, the psychological model of addiction is centered on emotions related to using these substances. The most common psychological symptoms of addiction include:
Because the psychological symptoms of addiction can’t be measured, it’s difficult to pinpoint their intensity. While we can’t determine a person’s subjective level of mental distress, we do know that drug addiction and alcoholism can cause severe psychological dependency.
Certain substances produce more and clearer symptoms of psychological dependence. Some of the most common drugs associated with symptoms of psychological dependence include: