Some diseases are emotional and addiction is one of them.

We do not know how to manage our emotions and this can end up making us sick.

That addiction is an emotional disease is a fact that few people know, but which nevertheless explains a lot. This is what Giovanni Arnaus, Expert Therapist in Addictive Behaviors , tells us.

Addiction is a disease.

In psychology there are thousands of terms to define the different types of addictions. Addictions to alcohol or drugs are well known, but there are many others. Addictions to sex, antidepressants, work, shopping, stinking, social networks… Society considers it a minor problem, or does not even consider it a problem since some, such as addiction to work or sex, are well known and others, such as addiction to social networks, are not even recognized.

Yes, addiction is considered a disease. It is a disorder of the brain that can affect a person’s ability to control behavior related to a specific substance or activity. Addiction can have serious consequences for physical and mental health, as well as for personal relationships and general well-being.

An Emotional disease.

An emotional illness is a disorder of mood or emotion that can negatively affect a person’s mental health and general well-being. Examples of emotional illnesses include depression, anxiety disorder, bipolar disorder and schizophrenic disorder. These disorders can be treated with therapy, medication and psychosocial support.

Increasingly, health professionals are associating illnesses with emotions. Our way of feeling undoubtedly conditions our physical and mental health. Poor emotional management causes innumerable problems.

We do not know how to manage emotions.

It is not something learned, and we are not conscious of how we think, feel or act. We live in a society of thinking, but we do not pay attention to feeling.

We do not accept our emotions.

We do not know how to identify our emotions, much less accept them. The non-acceptance of emotions is what happens to us to want to run away from them. We run away from our emotions so we don’t have to feel them, so we don’t go through them.

Escape from emotions.

We escape from emotions and therefore we look for sensations that do not make us not feel the underlying feeling of discomfort. Unfortunately we live in societies whose rhythms of life generate a lot of discomfort, that’s why we want to get rid of it, that’s why we run away from those sensations.

It is normal to feel negative emotions such as sadness, anxiety or stress in certain life situations. However, some people may feel the need to escape from these negative emotions through harmful behaviors such as excessive consumption of alcohol or drugs, compulsive gambling, excessive use of social networks, among others.

It is important to keep in mind that escaping negative emotions may provide temporary relief, but it does not address the underlying cause of those emotions and can lead to more serious problems in the long run.

It is advisable to seek help from a mental health professional to learn how to manage negative emotions in a healthy way. It is also important to learn to recognize and express emotions appropriately, practice relaxation techniques, exercise regularly and lead a balanced life.

How to Manage Emotions

There are several ways to manage emotions in a healthy way, some of them are:

1. Accept emotions:

Accept that it is normal to feel negative emotions such as sadness, anxiety or stress in certain life situations.

Identify emotions:

It is important to learn to recognize the emotions you are feeling in order to understand and manage them effectively.

3. Expressing emotions:

Learn to express emotions appropriately, whether through writing, drawing or talking to someone you trust.

4. Practice relaxation techniques:

Yoga, meditation, deep breathing are some techniques that help relax the body and mind.

5. Exercise regularly:

Exercise helps release endorphins, which are chemicals that help elevate mood.

6. To have a balanced life:

It is important to have a balanced life, with a healthy diet, adequate sleep, time for social relations and activities that we enjoy.

7. Seek professional help:

If you feel you can’t handle your emotions, seeking help from a mental health professional can be helpful.

It is important to keep in mind that everyone is different and what works for one person may not work for another, so it is important to find what works for you and practice it consistently.

We all have emotional wounds.

Everyone, to a greater or lesser extent, has some kind of trauma, injury, or emotional deficiency. From the time we are children, we experience situations that condition us and as we become adults, they condition our personality.

We fall into Addictions.

Alcoholism, drug addiction, gambling addiction, cell phone addiction, addiction to people, shopping addiction, sex addiction, work addiction…

Anything is good to take away the feeling of discomfort, to not rush my reality, to not be with myself.

Addiction is considered a brain disorder and a behavioral disorder. It can have a significant impact on a person’s emotional health, as it can cause mood problems, anxiety and stress.

It can also affect a person’s personal relationships and general well-being. Paradoxically, however, it is not specifically considered an emotional disease, as it involves changes in the brain and behavior related to the specific substance or activity.

Symptoms of Addiction

Symptoms of addiction can vary depending on the type of substance or behavior to which you are addicted. Some common symptoms include:

  • Excessive use of the substance or behavior in spite of negative consequences
  • Inability to control or limit use of the substance or behavior
  • Denial of the seriousness of addiction
  • Physical or psychological problems related to the use of the substance or behavior
  • Prioritizing the use of the substance or behavior over other responsibilities and activities
  • Continuing to use the substance or behavior despite having problems related to health, work, relationships, etc.

It is important to mention that the diagnosis of addiction must be made by a mental health professional as there are specific criteria that must be met in order to make the diagnosis.

Addiction to personal relationships

Relationship addiction, also known as “love addiction” or “codependency,” refers to a pattern of behavior in which a person constantly seeks romantic or affectionate relationships, often to the detriment of his or her own interests and needs. This addiction is characterized by a desperate need to be in a relationship, a lack of self-esteem, and a tendency to choose unhealthy or toxic partners.

Symptoms of relationship addiction may include:

  • Feeling an inner emptiness when you are not in a relationship
  • Denying problems in a current relationship
  • Constantly changing partners
  • Not being able to be alone
  • Denying your own feelings and needs
  • Feeling responsible for your partner’s happiness
  • Clinging to toxic or harmful relationships

It is important to mention that the diagnosis must be made by a mental health professional as there are specific criteria that must be met in order to make the diagnosis.

Relationship addiction can be treated with individual or couples therapy, in which dysfunctional patterns of thinking and behavior can be explored and worked on. They can also work on building self-esteem and emotional independence.

Food Addiction

Food addiction refers to a pattern of behavior in which a person has a dysfunctional relationship with food, which may manifest itself in the form of binge eating, overeating or secret eating. This addiction can have a negative impact on a person’s physical and mental health.

Symptoms of food addiction may include:

  • Overeating, even when you are not hungry
  • Feeling an urgent need to eat certain foods
  • Eating in secret or hiding food
  • Feeling ashamed, guilty or anxious after eating
  • Having problems with weight or body image
  • Having difficulty controlling or limiting food intake
  • Overeating as a way to manage negative emotions

It is important to mention that the diagnosis must be made by a mental health professional as there are specific criteria that must be met in order to make the diagnosis.

Food addiction can be treated through individual or group therapy, in which dysfunctional thinking patterns and behavior related to food can be explored and worked on. They can also work on building a healthy relationship with food and the body, and learning skills to manage emotions in a healthy way.

Addiction to social networks

Social media addiction refers to a pattern of behavior in which a person has a dysfunctional relationship with social media, characterized by excessive or compulsive use of these platforms. This addiction can have a negative impact on a person’s physical and mental health, as well as on their interpersonal relationships and ability to perform daily tasks.

Symptoms of social networking addiction may include:

  • Spending a lot of time on social networks
  • Constantly checking social networks even when you have nothing to do
  • Prioritizing the use of social networks over other activities
  • Feeling anxious, sad or irritable when unable to access social networks
  • Denying or minimizing the time spent on social networking sites
  • Having trouble controlling or limiting the use of social networking sites
  • Using social networks as a way to evade reality or deal with negative emotions

It is important to mention that the diagnosis must be made by a mental health professional as there are specific criteria that must be met in order to make the diagnosis.

Social media addiction can be treated through individual or group therapy, in which dysfunctional patterns of thinking and behavior related to social media use can be explored and worked on. They can also work on building a healthy relationship with social networks and learning skills to manage emotions in a healthy way. Setting limits and prioritizing other activities and interpersonal relationships can help reduce the time spent on social networks.

Sex addiction, also known as “compulsive sexual dysfunction,” refers to a pattern of behavior in which a person has a dysfunctional relationship with sex, characterized by excessive or compulsive use of sexuality. This addiction can have a negative impact on a person’s physical and mental health, as well as on their interpersonal relationships and ability to perform daily tasks.

Symptoms of sex addiction may include:

  • Using sex as a way to evade reality or deal with negative emotions
  • Spending a lot of time thinking about sex or seeking sexual experiences
  • Having sex with multiple partners or having sex without commitment
  • Prioritizing sex over other activities and relationships
  • Using sex recklessly, putting health or well-being at risk.
  • Feeling anxious, sad or irritable when unable to access sexual experiences
  • Denying or minimizing time spent thinking about or seeking sexual experiences

It is important to mention that the diagnosis must be made by a mental health professional as there are specific criteria that must be met in order to make the diagnosis.

Sex addiction

Sex addiction can be treated through individual or group therapy, in which dysfunctional patterns of thinking and behavior related to the use of sexuality can be explored and worked on. They can also work on building a healthy relationship with sexuality and learning skills to manage emotions in a healthy way. Setting boundaries and prioritizing other activities and interpersonal relationships can help reduce time and preoccupation with sex.

Video game addiction refers to a pattern of behavior in which a person has a dysfunctional relationship with video games, characterized by excessive or compulsive use of video games. This addiction can have a negative impact on a person’s physical and mental health, as well as on their interpersonal relationships and ability to perform daily tasks.

Symptoms of video game addiction may include:

  • Spending a lot of time playing video games
  • Prioritizing play over other activities and relationships
  • Feeling anxious, sad or irritable when video games cannot be accessed
  • Denying or minimizing time spent playing video games
  • Using video games as a way to evade reality or deal with negative emotions
  • Having problems controlling or limiting the use of video games
  • Experiencing problems in academic or job performance, social or health problems related to excessive gambling

It is important to mention that the diagnosis must be made by a mental health professional as there are specific criteria that must be met in order to make the diagnosis.

Addiction to video games

Video game addiction can be treated through individual or group therapy, in which dysfunctional patterns of thinking and behavior related to video game use can be explored and worked on. They can also work on building a healthy relationship with video games and learning skills to manage emotions in a healthy way. Setting limits and prioritizing other activities and interpersonal relationships can help reduce the time spent playing video games.

Feel, Accept, go through your emotions.

Don’t believe anything you just read, experiment and think for yourself.

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