Trading addictions happens often. Many individuals attempt to “get rid” of their negative habits, but wind up picking up another unhealthy habit instead. Why does this happen? Many people who recently quit an addiction and are recovering experience heightened stress, pain, or anxiety because the vice that they originally used to fill in an emotional or psychological gap is now “gone”. When someone perceives a lack of control over their “loss” they may pick up a new addiction on many things: binge eating, overworking, gambling, cigarettes, benzodiazepines, sex, pornography, shopping, exercising and more.
When someone is recovering from an addiction, they may experience lower dopamine levels in their brain – the area that produces feelings of happiness and reward. When this happens, a person may latch on to something else to try and fulfill that craving. There are many signs that someone has left one addiction for another: constantly thinking about the new addiction, losing sleep to engage in the addiction, difficulty at school, work, or home, relationship issues, neglecting self-care or personal hygiene, experiencing stress and/or anxiety if unable to engage in new addiction.
The key to overcoming this new addiction is to find the root of the compulsion through therapy. Talking with a therapist can help a person address any subconscious emotions that haven’t reached the surface. By working through these hidden emotions, we can explore the direct root cause of our emotional and psychological distress – meaning that over time, we will be working directly with our issues instead of filling them with something else. If you feel that you have exchanged one addiction for another, call a doctor and therapist right away. There are many resources available to help people overcome this: in-patient or out-patient treatment facilities, psychotherapy, support groups, and more. By getting help, you can work on the core issue that you are having trouble working through and can be on your way to a happier, healthier life.
Residential treatment programs give you the time you need to focus on healing. Avalon Malibu is one of California’s only certified primary mental health treatment facility providing trusted programs with trusted results. For a confidential assessment and more information, call us today: 888-958-7511