Risk Factors For Shopping Addiction
Once again, there is no absolute consensus within the medical community regarding the causes of behavioural addiction, though it is generally accepted that genetic and environmental factors play roughly equal roles. However, several risk factors have been identified and generally accepted as typically greatly increasing the likelihood of the development of shopping addiction in any given individual.
Set Goals For Yourself Regarding Shopping
Next, if you want to stop your shopping addiction, you should set goals for yourself. For example, set a goal for yourself that you are not going to spend any money at all on shopping until the weekend. Or, when you leave your house, leave all of your credit and debit cards behind. Only take the cash you are going to spend. This is a good way for you to control your spending. You cannot exceed your spending limit if you do not have cards in your wallet. You can set different goals for yourself using different time frames.
For example, you can set goals for the amount of money you want to spend a single day. Then, you can set another goal for the amount of money you will spend in a week. After this, you can set another goal for the amount of money you will spend on shopping in a given month. Once you realize you can go without these purchases, these goals wont seem like they are that difficult.
Of course, there will be some purchases that are absolutely necessary. You need to budget for them accordingly. At the same time, if you go over budget in one area, you cannot spend as much money when you go shopping. Keep this in mind as you set goals for yourself. This is one of the best ways for you to take control of your spending habits.
Signs & Symptoms Of Shopping Addiction
Addiction in any form is typically a very secretive disorder: an addict may go to great lengths to conceal their condition from others, driven possibly by a sense of shame, a fear that their behaviour may be curtailed , concerns that public knowledge of their addiction might negatively impact their professional or academic circumstances and reputation, or perhaps a simple reluctance to confront the reality of their situation.
In the case of shopping addiction unlike, for instance, many substance abuse disorders, and some behavioural addictions and related conditions such as eating disorders there may be few if any visible effects upon a sufferers physical health by which their addiction might be identified. The signs and symptoms of shopping addiction are much more likely to be emotional and behavioural in nature, and to manifest by way of their impact upon an addicts life circumstances.
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What Is The Hedonic Treadmill
One of the best ways to visualize a shopping addiction is something called the hedonic treadmill. The hedonic treadmill is the tendency of a person to remain at the same level of happiness despite the achievements of specific goals. One of the biggest reasons why people purchase shiny things when they go shopping is that they think they will make them happier.
Unfortunately, these things only make someone happier for a short amount of time before they return to the same level of happiness. Therefore, it is easy to get stuck on a treadmill, constantly chasing that permanent high that never seems to follow.
Therefore, it is important to break the cycle, get off the treadmill, and find ways to stop a shopping addiction.
And heres how to do it
Consistently Spending More Than You Can Afford
Ifyou cant pay your billsand still continue to make purchases, this symptom is probably the biggest clue that you have a shopping problem, you cant afford your lifestyle, and you arent living your best life.
Im no expert, but for me, shopping addiction = buying and then returning items more than once a week.
I could give two flying squirrels if you bought it on sale or got a really good deal.
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What Are The Causes Of Shopping Addiction
Causes of shopping addiction can be associated with developmental, cultural, and neurobiological influences. The paper from World Psychiatry reports that the neurological background of shopping addiction could be linked to impaired neurotransmission, especially in opioid, dopaminergic, and serotonergic systems. In other words, people may develop shopping addiction because making a purchase may trigger the brains reward system to trigger the release of dopamine. As a result, they like how it makes them feel and want to experience it again.
The most common causes of shopping addiction are listed below:
- Consumerism and frequent exposure to advertising
- Easy access to physical and online stores
- Neuroticism, susceptibility to negative moods
- Low self-esteem
- Lack of impulse control
- Presence of other problems such as eating disorders, substance use disorders, anxiety disorders, mood disorders such as depression, and personality disorders
Therapy For Shopping Addiction
The primary form of treatment for shopping addiction is therapy. Addiction counselors sometimes offer shopping addiction counseling that uses a hybrid approach drawn from different styles of therapy. Other counselors who provide therapy for shopping addiction specialize in a particular therapeutic method. One of the most popular interventions for treating substance use and compulsive behavior disorders is cognitive behavioral therapy .
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Shopping Addiction Versus Substance Addiction
Clearly, the primary difference between shopping addiction and substance addiction is that in the case of the former there is no external chemical influence being exerted upon the sufferer, and therefore no external substance upon which a sufferer can become physically dependent. However, not all addictive substances result in such physical dependence, and certain mechanisms underpinning addiction are the same for both behavioural addiction and some substance abuse disorders. Both involve imbalanced neurochemistry in particular, in the brains reward centres which drive repeated compulsive behaviour despite any possible detrimental effects to the addict.
Substance addiction is typically seen as a far greater personal and social ill, and poses many risks especially those related to physical health which are not applicable to cases of shopping addiction. Nevertheless, the latter can certainly lead to the destruction of an individuals financial well-being specifically at least as easily, and potentially much more quickly, than can a substance abuse disorder, and can have just as serious ramifications for an addicts relationships and life prospects, as well as proving extremely detrimental to their mental health.
Symptoms Of Shopping Addiction
Symptoms of shopping addiction will vary in severity depending on individual factors as well as the extent of the addiction. Like other addictions, it is helpful to consider them along a continuum of mild, moderate, and severe.
Shopping addiction symptoms may include but are not limited to the following:
- Impaired impulse control
- Substance use disorders 8
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Cognitive Behavioral Therapy Treatment
According to the Mayo Clinic, cognitive behavioral therapy programs are the gold standard in behavior modification. This form of therapy typically consists of a single patient engaging with a trained therapist in a session-based format at some regular interval, often weekly. CBT is especially popular for its noninvasive and non-drug-based approach to therapy, which allows the patient to exercise more control over treatment than with other options.
Are There Shopping Addiction Drug Options
Yes, drug options for shopping addiction are available in the presence of comorbidities such as mental health disorders. Many persons with shopping addiction also have anxiety or depression, which is why their treatment may include medications that manage these mental illnesses.
At this point, there is no specific medication for shopping addiction. Drug options include medications formulated to manage other problems, usually depression.
Although a lot more research is necessary on this subject, these medications may include:
- Citalopram , an antidepressant
- Escitalopram , an antidepressant
- Fluvoxamine , an antidepressant
- Memantine, used to slow the progression of moderate-to-severe Alzheimers disease
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What Is A Spending Addiction
Spending addictions are used interchangeably with shopping addictions which are behavioral disorders that are often used to compensate for emotional upsets, bolster self esteem, or to feel a sense of belonging or empowerment. According to a published study by the Indiana University, People who shop till they drop and run their credit cards up to the limit often have a shopping addiction. They may believe that if they shop, they will feel better, but, it generally makes them feel worse.
Compulsive shopping and spending is influenced and increased by social and cultural values, media, the internet, easier purchasing via credit, and 24 hours daily availability. Similar to other addictions it can be described as a pattern of chronic, repetitive, shopping and spending that becomes uncontrollable and difficult to stop, ultimately resulting in harmful consequences.
How Do You Know If You Have A Shopping Addiction
You have many items in your closet with the tags still attached You try to hide your shopping purchases from family or friends Youre spending more than you can afford Youre harming relationships due to shopping too much You shop as a reaction to feeling depressed or angry Youre shopping as a way to feel less guilty about a previous purchase Youre constantly buying and returning things You buy items you dont need just because its on sale
Read Next: 10 common signs of a shopping addiction
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Synthesis Of The Cbd Pharmacotherapy Evidence Base
Case reports . Six case reports describe positive conclusions from treating CBD with tricyclic and SSRI antidepressants , a course of the opioid antagonist, naltrexone with the aim of reducing urges associated with CBD , and a 3-month treatment of the anticonvulsant topiramate with the rationale that it has shown some efficacy with mood disorders and obsessive and compulsive symptoms . The case reports make a poor contribution to CBD pharmacotherapy outcome evidence base, as outcomes in all but one report were unsupported by valid or reliable outcome measurement. All case reports had in common a lack of sufficient methodological control and the insufficient detail in general reporting would also greatly limit generalizability and replication. Adverse effects also undermined the effectiveness of each drug .
Where Can You Find Help And Treatment Options
With several options of treatment available, picking the right one for you may depend on your resources and if you have health insurance.
Most insurance companies cover some counseling and therapy services. This is a great place to start your search for help. Call the number on your insurance card and ask for an in-network mental health professional. A therapist, psychologist or other recommended mental health professional can treat your addiction with in-person visits and recommend additional resources.
If you do not have insurance, there are still opportunities to get help. Debtors Anonymous is similar to AA and follows a 12-step program. It can help you find a local support group and will provide you with guidance and hope for recovery.
You can also reach out to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Service Administration . This government agency offers a helpline for information on local treatment and community-based organizations to help you overcome your shopping habit.
Intervention For Shopping Addiction
An intervention as a carefully planned process that involves the family, friends, and sometimes even colleagues of an addicted person. Although intervention styles may vary, they generally involve gathering loved ones and friends to confront the person who suffers from addiction, while getting them to accept treatment for their condition.
Successful interventions include offering a plan of treatment, along with its phases, objectives, and parameters. A follow-up treatment plan is also necessary to ensure that the addicted person has a greater chance of recovery. Recovery from a shopping addiction requires ongoing support and encouragement from all family members.
Getting Help For A Shopping Addiction
It isnt fun to feel out of control or depressed about shopping too much. It isnt pleasant to lose those close to you due to the arguments that may occur as a result of your shopping addiction. If you are, or a loved one is, struggling with a shopping addiction, it is time to get help now.
To get help on treating shopping addiction, you simply need to pick up the phone. Our trained staff members are standing by at to help you.
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Spending Addiction Warning Signs:
- Using credit cards to spend over budgets and feeling lost without them.
- Feeling euphoria when spending money.
- Feeling ashamed, guilty, or embarrassed after spending money.
- Lying to others about purchases and costs or attempting to conceal the amount of money spent.
- Constantly having to juggle money and credit cards to make ends meet.
- Money and material things become central to having a good life and the yardstick to measure self and others.
What Is A Shopping Addiction
Shopping addiction is a behavioral addiction in which a person shops compulsively to relieve distressing negative emotions like anxiety, pain, and sadness. People who suffer from shopping addiction tend to experience preoccupation with shopping, uncontrollable urges to shop and spend more time shopping than on other important activities and obligations. Shopping addiction can be effectively treated using cognitive and behavioral psychotherapies that address negative thoughts and behaviors driving the addiction.
In this Article:
Shopping addiction affects more than one in 20 adults in the U.S. and is marked by the desire to shop and purchase items despite not needing those items or having the ability to afford such items. Shopping addiction and drug addiction share many of the same traits and behaviors, except instead of being addicted to substances, individuals who suffer from shopping addiction are addicted to the feelings triggered by shopping, or to the act of shopping itself.
When left untreated, shopping addiction can interfere with your mental and emotional health and cause problems surrounding your finances, relationships, career, and education. Getting professional treatment for your shopping addiction can help you overcome the root causes of your addiction, and teach you how to shop and lead a healthier lifestyle without jeopardizing your livelihood.
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What Causes An Addiction To Shopping
According to Ruth Engs from Indiana University, some people develop shopping addictions because they essentially get addicted to how their brain feels while shopping. As they shop, their brain releases endorphins and dopamine, and over time, these feelings become addictive. A professor in applied health sciences, Engs claims that 10 to 15 percent of the population may be predisposed to these feelings.
Learning To Keep Spending Under Control
For compulsive buyers, the cycle of spending is hard to break. While most recognize they have a problem and try to resist spending, their compulsion wins. Because of the challenges of an addiction, its important to ask for help.
There are immediate steps you can take to improve your finances. Make a budget, and spend time learning and understanding your finances. Having a better understanding of money and budgets will help you begin to control your spending and pay off debts.
While so much of society runs on credit cards, many compulsive buyers need to limit their purchases to cash. This direct money transaction prevents spending more than you have.
When you control your spending, you can then begin the process of paying off your debts. As you work to pay off your debts, know your rights and responsibilities to help you navigate the process.
With treatment, you can recover from your shopping addiction and discover new emotional and financial stability.
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Are You Addicted To Online Shopping
For many people, online shopping is a bad habit that drains their finances and leads to unnecessary purchases. For others, online shopping has become a serious problem. As CNBC reports, some people, especially Gen Xers and millennials, develop an addiction to online shopping. For these people, online shopping is a habit thats gotten entirely out of control, wrecking their finances, long-term goals, and even relationships.
Online shopping addiction has many of the same symptoms as regular shopping addiction and compulsive buying. However, its easier to indulge in because you can now shop anywhere, at any time, thanks to your phone.
How do you know if your online shopping habit has become something more sinister? Look for these signs:
- You often hide purchases from your family.
- You frequently exceed your monthly budget because of online purchases.
- You have rising credit card debt because of online purchases.
- You are running out of space to store or hide your online purchases.
- You have a secret credit card that you use to make online purchases.
- You argue with your spouse or partner over your purchases.
- You often feel guilty after you make an online purchase.
- You feel upset or out of sorts if you cant visit your favorite retailers website.
- You feel anxious that youll miss a deal when you dont have access to the Internet.
- You often buy things you dont need just because they were on sale.
- You feel like youre not able to stop online shopping.
Review Your Bank Account And Track Your Bills
Next, you need to take a closer look at your bank account. Sometimes, it is difficult to figure out exactly how much money you are spending when you decide to go shopping. Once you realize how much money you are spending, you will realize how much money you are wasting. Sure, those $5 purchases may not seem like they amount to a lot of money however, if you are purchasing one or two of them every day, this could amount to several hundred dollars by the end of the month.
Remember that you dont necessarily purchase everything using your debit card. Therefore, you need to take a look at all payment portals you use. Get a handle on all of your bills. This will make it easier for you to figure out exactly how much money you are spending. Then, break down your purchases by what is necessary and what is not. How much money are you actually spending on unnecessary purchases? There is a good chance that it is a lot more than you think.
Once you realize how much money you are spending, you will have an easier time stopping. Figure out the scope of the problem. Then, you can develop a plan to put a stop to it.
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