According to scientific research, there are two basic theories of addiction. These include the following:
Genetic-based Theories of Addiction
One of the theories of addiction posits that addictions that go south are actually as a result of genetics.
The implication is that addictions are as a result of certain genes in an individual that makes him or her to be predisposed to using addictions in a bad way.
These genes can also be transferred from one generation to the other.
According to this theory, up to 40 to 60% of all addictions are as a result of genetic problems. Probably, this is why an alcohol addict or drug addict has a high chance of fathering a child that would end up being an addict too. Numerous other factors such as environment and other influences may contribute to these predispositions, but genetic factors might play an important role in determining this.
An offshoot of this theory is the Disease-based theories of addiction which claims that addictions are as a result of certain brain diseases that may have arisen from genetic factors.
Biological-based Theories of Addiction
The second position concerning the theories of addiction supports the notion that addictions are ultimately as a result of one’s choices over time.
According to this school of thought, when an individual decides to indulge in an activity, and he keeps on carrying out this activity, the brain makes it easier for this person to continue with the activity, so that mental activity can be devoted to other activities.
While both theories of addiction may not be able to agree on what brings about bad addictions in the first place, they both agree on the fact that addictions start in the brain. Furthermore, the two theories of addiction agree that the brain is capable of changing its structure so as to change a bad addiction to a good one.
How To Forget The Theories Of Addiction and Take Actionable Steps To Freedom
- The first step in dealing with addictions and bad habits is to realize and acknowledge that they are holding a powerful sway over your life. A lot of people are actually living in a BIG denial that their addictions are not as bad as they seem, or that they can be easily wished away. They can’t and they won’t! Until you make the decision to acknowledge and recognize that you have a problem, you would not make any headway in overcoming your addiction.
- Remember to be sincere with yourself because no one can help a man that would lie to himself. A good way to do this is to try to be as objective as possible with yourself. Try and step out of yourself and take a look at yourself and imagine the kind of advice you would have given a person that is involved the destructive habit you’re struggling with. You may choose to do this during your next meditation session. Take note and make sure that you are not beating yourself up as you are doing this. You are merely taking a look at and diagnosing your habit.
- The following checklist would prove very helpful in helping you be very practical with yourself:
- Is the practice of the behavior becoming frequent – daily and/or multiple times per day?
- Do you choose to engage in the behavior rather than work, spend time with loved ones or engage in activities that you enjoyed before?
- Are you experiencing other consequences resulting from your inability to stop the addiction?
- Do you have an ongoing desire or unsuccessful efforts to stop indulging in the behavior?
- Do you find yourself craving for the behavior?
- Do you experience withdrawal symptoms, especially after attempts to reduce or stop the behavior?
- Do you try to conceal your behaviors?
- Do you find yourself attempting to protect or even own the consequences of your addictive behavior?
- Are you increasingly feeling distant to your close friends, relatives and loved ones
- Do you find yourself in conflict with your former value system and set of personal ethics?
- Do you find yourself having intense mood swings ranging unpredictably from high to low to several times in a day?
- Do you find yourself engaging in more self-defeating behavior?