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Addiction is to a degree the psychological dependence on anything in excess due to social, biological or psychological reasons.  Anything can range from chocolate, diet coke, crisps to drugs, smoking and alcohol.  There is an attachment to the addicted activity and part of stopping is dealing with the loss of this.  It is undoubtedly easier to give up chocolate, diet coke or crisps.  The more serious addictions such as drugs and alcohol can often be an alternative way of dealing with issues, particularly if they can obliterate and/or relieve the unpleasant and distressful feelings associated with these.

An addict needs a drug to maintain normal physiological functioning and the benefits of taking drugs or drinking etc can outweigh the costs, meeting the physical/emotional needs regarding help and understanding, rather than blame and personal responsibility.  This means that when trying to stop, it can be exceedingly hard.  However, relapses are a learning experience, resulting possibly from inadequate resources and most likely to happen when negative emotional states are prevalent e.g. stress.

Support, understanding and a strong desire are the key factors in overcoming addiction.  Alcoholics Anonymous and other support groups are hugely successful in helping addicts but are not for everyone.  Each person is unique and it’s all about finding what works best for the individual – sometimes trying different methods are necessary before the right one is found.  In addition, an understanding of what has caused the addiction in the first place can contribute to stopping and addressing the painful emotions so they do not need to be eased through the taking of drugs, alcohol etc.


The views here are the author’s and are intended for general guidance only