Personality Traits Of An Addictive Personality
Simply because you fit the description of several traits of an addictive personality does not necessarily mean that you have one. However, it may mean that you should watch your relationship with harmful substances and activities because you may be more prone to addiction. The following personality traits may be indicative of someone with an addictive personality.
How Do You Know If You Have An Addictive Personality
During addiction treatment, there will be many opportunities to evaluate your behavior as it contributes to chronic substance abuse. In group therapy, individuals that open up about their urges are learning how to deal with an addictive personality.
For example, individuals that are more likely to become addicts or have addictive personalities, often have the following in common:
- Have other family members that suffer from addiction.
- Were raised by parents or guardians with addictive personalities.
- Have romantic relationships with partners that like similar addictive tendencies.
- Have a history of frequent mood swings or are described as pushy.
- Engage in thrill-seeking behaviors or are easily excited.
- Often seem obsessive and/or compulsive.
- Prefers a quick-fix instead of a long-term, sustainable solution.
Although having an addictive personality depends on a persons life experience, some things can make them more prone. By keeping an eye out for red flags and motivation behind your behaviors, improvement is often possible. Addictive personality treatment while participating in addiction treatment allows for a safe environment to make positive behavioral corrections.
A Guide On How To Recognize The Signs Of A Personality Disorder
Not everyone with an addictive personality becomes an addict. Although, it does make repeated substance abuse more likely. Having an addictive personality is a common character trait that tends to run in families, much like an addiction. Or more specifically, alcoholism. While facing the ups and downs of chronic substance abuse, ignoring personality traits like this could lead to future relapse.
First, youd have to receive an accurate diagnosis, and learn how to manage it moving forward. Recognizing the signs of an addictive personality is crucial. Here is our guide to answering your question: do I have an addictive personality?
Drugs or alcohol become the vice that brings on those desired feelings. The need for drugs or alcohol to fulfill these emotional needs starts to increase, and a habit is formed. Thus begins the cycle of addictio
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Why Is Addictive Personality A Problematic Term
The concept of an addictive personality is tricky because of how loaded and charged the term has become, says Ben Friday, a therapist in Sacramento.
It can often be weaponized by family or others in society. It is typically seen as a derogatory term, which most of my clients are unlikely to endorse when living with a use disorder, he explains.
The negative implications of the term can also impact your healing process, says Friday.
When labeling someone as having a personality trait, we typically view these as fixed points, so people feel hopeless about change if they view this as a facet of their personality, he adds.
But mental health challenges can be managed and support is available if youre experiencing mental or emotional distress. Theres nothing that implies you have to or will experience these symptoms for the rest of your life.
Alcohol Tobacco And Other Drugs
The misuse and abuse of alcohol, tobacco, illicit drugs, and prescription medications affect the health and well-being of millions of Americans. SAMHSAs 2020 National Survey on Drug Use and Health reports that approximately 19.3 million people aged 18 or older had a substance use disorder in the past year.
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Impulse Control And The Addictive Personality
Other factors include ones personal interests. Another indicator of an addictive personality includes the need for stimulation. Someone who is restless and is in need of constant excitement may develop characteristics of an addictive personality. In the case of impulsivity, or rapid unplanned behavior without due regard for ramifications, decision-making abilities can be impacted. Poor impulse control can also invite the need for variety, influencing someone to seek out new habits. These habits may soon become compulsions or addictions.
Why Is The Idea Of An Addictive Personality Harmful
At first glance, the concept of an addictive personality might seem like a good tool for preventing addiction.
If we can identify those who have the highest risk, wouldnt that make it easier to help them before they develop an addiction?
But boiling the complex issue of addiction down to a personality type can be harmful for several reasons:
- It can lead people to falsely believe they arent at risk because they dont have the right personality for addiction.
- It may make people who have an addiction think that theyre unable to recover if addiction is hardwired into who they are.
- It suggests that people experiencing addiction exhibit traits that are generally considered negative, such as lying and manipulating others.
In reality, anyone can experience addiction including goal-oriented people who have a large network of friends, plenty of confidence, and a reputation of honesty.
Experts have identified a number of factors likely to increase someones risk for addiction.
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The Symptoms Of An Addictive Personality
In addition to the impact of genes, there are some warning signs that you may be prone to addiction. These are not symptoms of an addictive personality so much as they are signs that addiction may be forming. Some of these signs include:
- Lying about your substance use
- Manipulating others to get drugs or alcohol
- Acting impulsively
- Engaging in criminal behavior as a result of using drugs or drinking alcohol
- Shifting blame for your personal problems to others
- Constantly experimenting with new substances or experiences, seeking out new sensations or adrenaline
- The inability to quit using drugs or drinking alcohol, even after this use begins to cause interpersonal problems at work or at home
How To Deal With A Drug Addict
Drug addiction knows no boundaries, affecting people from all walks of life. Friends, family, employers, and coworkers can all fall prey to the lure of drugs and alcohol under the right circumstances. Knowing how to deal with a drug addict can help you disengage from the web that addiction weaves, which will save you much frustration and heartache. Substance abuse can make a good person do bad things, but some tips on how to handle a loved one that is a drug addict.
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Dont Wait To Get Help
It is a myth that a person has to hit rock-bottom before you can get help for your addictions. You may have a personality that craves excess but it doesnt have to be unhealthy. A healthy enthusiasm adds to life, while an addiction takes away from it.
Behavioral Health Centers can help you find balance in your life. Our addiction specialists are experienced in treating dual diagnosis situations, the most common cause of addictions. We have inpatient and outpatient programs so you can begin your rehab at the right intensity and step down to lower levels as needed.
Of course, Behavioral Health Centers has an aftercare program, the final step. We are devoted to helping you have a successful outcome from your treatment, and continue to long-term recovery. Waiting wont help you in any way. Contact us now. We are available to answer your questions at any time and you can reach us here: .
Behavioral Health Centers
The Role Of An Addictive Personality In Relationships
Dealing with the heavy topic of addiction becomes even more crucial when you take into consideration the effect that addiction can have on even the closest of relationships. These relationships can be:
- A boyfriend that has an addictive personality
- A husband with an addictive personality
- Any individual married to someone with an addictive personality
- A brother or sister with an addictive personality
- A child with an addictive personality
- Any family member with an addictive personality
Someone who has some of the personality traits associated with addiction will most likely experience some issues in their relationships especially with those closest to them.
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Healthy Habits: How To Make Your Addictive Personality Work For You
We know that addiction is a disease. Treating it isnt as simple as saying, No more for me, thanks. Drug and alcohol abuse changes your prefrontal cortex, which makes it difficult for you to make rational decisions, even basic ones like No, I dont want to use today.
We also know the pitfalls, perils, and problems associated with addiction. Maybe you, like many others, have lost out on friends, missed opportunities, experiences, and money chasing a bit of relief from pain. While addiction can be challenging to deal with, what if there was such a thing as a positive addiction?
Are There Environmental Risk Factors For Addiction
When it comes to addiction, the environmental factors of an addicted person can play an extensive role in the development and continuance of their dependency. This can include an individuals home, work, school, or social environment.
Of course, some individuals may experience dramatically different conditions based on which of these environments they are in, thus varying the level of impact each has on their likelihood to develop an addiction.
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How To Know If You Have An Addictive Personality
Recognizing that you have an addictive personality can help you avoid alcohol abuse and other addictions.
Keep in mind, people with certain personality traits are not guaranteed to develop an addiction. Many biological and environmental factors play a role in someones risk of addiction.
However, even if you are unaware of your genetic risks and/or you have few environmental risks, you might still be concerned about your risk of addiction. If you are worried you could develop an addiction, there are things you can do to reduce your risk.
Educate yourself about addiction, learn coping skills that help you manage stress in your life, and spend time with positive, supportive people.
Many people with addiction understand how important it is to avoid addiction triggers. Even if you are not sure of your risk or you know you do not have an addiction but you are concerned, you can avoid things with a high likelihood of triggering negative coping skills.
Are Addictive Personalities A Myth
Most addiction research today states that there is no one personality that is more likely to develop an addiction than another. While certain personality traits might be present in multiple individuals struggling with addiction, these specific traits can exist as minor parts of completely contradicting whole personalities.
Thus, a social standard for what an addictive personality should look like might not actually provide an accurate understanding of what types of individuals are more likely to develop addictions.
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How To Help Someone With A High Addiction Risk
If you know someone you consider to have an addictive personality or who has a high risk of addiction, you can help them by:
- Approaching them about their substance use or other behavior in a caring manner that is firm and respects your boundaries.
- Expressing concern about their behavior and explaining how their choices are negatively impacting you and others in their lives.
- Presenting facts about how their choices have affected you and how it might be negatively impacting their lives.
- Explaining to them that they have an illness or are at risk of developing an illness if they are not careful and that you understand their actions are not due to a character flaw.
- Engaging other people in their lives who care about them to express concerns similar to yours.
- Offering professional help and agreeing to support them in finding the right treatment options.
- Allowing them to accept responsibility for their behavior.
- Offering hope and sharing with them how life is better when they do not succumb to an addiction.
- Recommending self-help groups as an early intervention strategy. Some people arent ready for formal inpatient or outpatient treatment but benefit from attending 12-step or other self-help meetings.
How To Overcome An Addictive Personality
There isnt truly such a thing as an addictive personality, even though you may feel like you are more prone to addictive behavior. Nevertheless, you should still be aware of substance abuse triggers and cravings in order to keep yourself out of situations where the temptation to abuse substances may arise. Examples of potential triggers could be:
- Special occasions
Consider Holding An Intervention
If a friend or loved ones actions have reached the point where other people are suffering the consequences, it may be time to stage an intervention. An intervention is designed to confront the addict about his or her drug problem and how its affected other peoples lives. It is also a great first step to sending an addict to rehab. Friends, family members, coworkers, and employers or anyone affected by the addicts actions can be a part of an intervention.
In cases of severe addiction or where theres a good chance the addict may become aggressive or violent, its best to have an intervention specialist conduct the meeting. Also, be sure to have a rehab program in place in the event your friend or loved agrees to go into treatment. If he or she refuses to get treatment, be ready to set firm boundaries and consequences for this choice.
Its not easy to handle a drug addict, whether you live with them, hang out with them, or work with them. While its only natural to want to help, protecting yourself from the harmful effects of addiction is also important. The good news is you dont have to cut them out of your life when you know how to deal with addiction.
- health.harvard.edu How Addiction Hijacks the Brain
- ps.psychiatryonline.org Responsibility and Choice in Addiction
- ncbi.nlm.nih.gov Social Processes Explaining the Benefits of Al-Anon Participation
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Tips For Overcoming An Addiction
Quitting is a different experience for everyone. Some people find it empowering. Others find it painful, difficult, and frustrating, sometimes needing many attempts before achieving their goal. Still, others discover new sides to themselves during the quitting process .
There is no “right” way to feel while you are quitting. However, if you are feeling depressed or find yourself constantly wanting to return to the addictive behavior, you should seek support and treatment.
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The Science Behind Saying No
Dr. Nora Volkow, the director of the NIHs National Institute on Drug Abuse, states, When the frontal cortex isnt working properly, people cant make the decision to stop taking the drugeven if they realize the price of taking that drug may be extremely high, and they might lose custody of their children or end up in jail. Nonetheless, they take it.
Couple this with an addictive personality, and you can see why it can be challenging for people to kick bad habits. However, what if we could replace bad habits with good habits? Kick the harmful addictions out and replace them with positive addictions?
Do Addictive Behaviors Lead To Addiction
Some people are more likely to develop a substance use disorder. We often blame their personalities for placing them at risk. But, that increase their risk of addiction.
The National Institute on Drug Abuse also includes having addicted parents or family members with mental health disorders. These things can make someone predisposed to having addictive traits and addiction. For example, growing up with parents that misused alcohol can increase your risk of struggle with alcohol abuse.
However, its impossible to pinpoint addiction to someones personality.
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Using Sex To Replace Intimacy
It might seem contradictory to suggest that sex could replace intimacy. But people who are addicted to sex tell a different story: Constantly seeking sexual arousal and gratification can actually distance you from your partners, as you lose yourself in the sensations of the sexual experience, rather than being aware of the feelings of the other person.
Whatyou Can Expect In Your Relationship
Whileits true that you should be wise and cautious about beginning a relationshipwith someone who has an addictive personality, its important to understandthat you dont necessarily need to avoid spending time with people who aredealing with these traits.
Instead,take the time to learn more about this type of personality and how you can helpthose you care about as they work to overcome these traits. You should,however, make sure that the person youre dating is aware of the problem theirfacing and is actively working to improve.
Now,lets talk about a few of the things your significant other may struggle withif he or she has an addictive personality. Your partner may:
- Suffer from anxiety.
- Be impulsive and take risks often.
- Seem unnaturally cautious at times.
- Struggle to connect with you emotionally.
- Have a hard time controlling his/her feelings.
- Show signs of instability in various areas of life.
Sometimes,the person you care about may struggle to regulate his or her emotions. Thiscan negatively impact the way he or she interacts with you. And, since yourloved one may have trouble expressing whats going on in their life,misunderstandings can happen frequently.
Asyou work to establish a meaningful and successful relationship, its importantto understand that things will be far from easy. It may be beneficial to getcounseling and learn how to work through difficult moments.
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