Alcoholism and drug dependence aren’t the only forms of addiction that exist. Addiction itself refers to a complex brain disease that results from repeated use of drugs, alcohol, or engaging in repetitive behaviors despite the harm they may cause to the person and others. At Banyan Treatment Centers Chicago, we’re familiar with the psychological aspect of addiction and understand that it can come in many forms that aren’t necessarily related to prescription or illicit drugs or alcohol. If you’re in addiction recovery, you need to know about these five other types of addiction to avoid after rehab.
As a drug and alcohol treatment center in Chicago, we understand that there are other things in life that can cause addiction. Avoiding addiction related to things outside of illicit drugs and alcohol is especially important for people in addiction recovery. Developing addictive behaviors, in general, is also unhealthy for a variety of reasons. Below are five kinds of addictions to avoid that aren’t related to illicit drugs or alcohol.
Going back to work after rehab is important and beneficial for many people in addiction recovery. It’s nice to create a new daily routine that revolves around your sobriety. Adjusting to a drug or alcohol-free lifestyle requires a lot of changes that can be stressful. Many recovering addicts use work as a way to cope with their stress by channeling all their energy into their tasks. However, as a person who has a history of addictive behavior, creating an unhealthy focus on work can make you a workaholic.
A workaholic is someone who compulsively works hard and long hours. Workaholism is often the result of anxiety, low self-esteem, and relationship problems, which are also things that can cause addiction to substances. These are all issues that should be properly addressed, especially if you’re in addiction recovery. At Banyan Chicago, we provide different addiction therapies in Naperville that help patients work out these underlying problems so they can have addictive behavior like workaholism in recovery.
Many addicts in recovery feel like they can’t get through their day without at least one cup of coffee. And while drinking moderate amounts of coffee is okay for most people, the caffeine it contains is addictive. Caffeine is a central nervous system stimulant that’s also considered a psychoactive drug. In fact, it’s the most consumed psychoactive drug in the world. Unlike most other psychoactive drugs, caffeine isn’t restricted or regulated in any part of the world. Most people get their caffeine intake from drinks like soda, coffee, and tea, and can even be present in chocolate.
Most people drink caffeine for its energy-boosting side effects. Caffeine’s side effects include increased heart rate, energy, alertness, and blood pressure. Some people are more sensitive to caffeine than others, so the severity of these side effects may vary from person to person. Many people in recovery heavily rely on caffeine to keep up with the changes in their bodies. Going from constant cocaine abuse to a sober life can affect a person’s body. People may compensate for their lack of energy with caffeine. They may also enjoy the extra boost it gives them. However, caffeine can be harmful to your health and should not be consumed in excess.
Both sober and non-sober people rely on technology to fight boredom. But this too can lead to addictive behavior. Technology addiction is frequent and compulsive technology-related behavior is practiced despite the repercussions. A dependence on tech can significantly impact a person’s health and relationships. As newer smartphones are released and online platforms are advanced, more and more people are becoming reliant on the internet in general. Try to reduce your screen time and limit the amount of time you spend watching TV or on social media. Tech abuse can promote isolation, loneliness, and be harmful to mental health. These consequences can be especially critical for someone in addiction recovery.
Nicotine is a stimulant drug and the main ingredient in tobacco products. It works by speeding up communication between neurons in the brain and body. Despite the dangers of nicotine and toxic chemicals like carbon monoxide and tar it contains, it’s legal for adults 18 and older to purchase in the United States. Many former heavy drug users and alcoholics start smoking cigarettes and using other tobacco products to sustain their sobriety. However, this is merely replacing one addiction with another. Long-term use of nicotine is linked to lung cancer, cardiovascular disease, and several other health conditions. If you’re struggling with addiction cravings, ask for help instead of turning to nicotine. We offer an alumni program that offers support to patients who have completed addiction treatment with us so we can help them avoid problems like nicotine addiction.
Gambling addiction is the uncontrollable desire to gamble despite the repercussions. Gambling is addictive because it stimulates the brain’s reward system similar to drugs and alcohol. Like these substances, gambling can trigger the release of dopamine in the brain, which happens when we do something we enjoy. People also become obsessed with the risk involved in gambling and with the thrill of winning. Again, this is replacing addiction with another negative form of behavior. Not only can this drain you of your finances and affect your relationships, but gambling can also lead to relapse. Drugs and alcohol are often present in gambling circles, which can negatively impact your recovery.
Can you get addicted to exercise? Yes. While exercising in addiction recovery is important, this can also become an addiction. Exercise addiction is an obsession with physical fitness and exercise. This form of addiction is often the result of body image and eating disorders. These individuals become dependent on exercise, similar to how a person with a substance abuse disorder is dependent on drugs or alcohol. Like these substances, exercise can also cause a release of chemicals like dopamine and endorphins, which boost mood and energy.
Replacing addiction with exercise is common in people struggling with their sobriety. They may become obsessed with exercising because they find it keeps them distracted and boosts their mood. However, exercising too much can lead to serious health issues. If you’ve started exercising to the point where it’s doing more harm than good, cut back on your workouts. You should also speak to your doctor and maybe even a nutritionist to create a health plan that works for you.
Sobriety is about avoiding addiction and readjusting any addictive behaviors that contributed to your substance abuse disorder in the first place. If you aren’t sober and are having trouble quitting drugs and alcohol, we can help. Call us now at 888-280-4763 to learn more about our substance abuse treatment programs in Naperville.