Many people don’t get help for their addiction because they assume they can control it. Often, this misconception is fueled by the idea of an addictive personality. While there are specific signs that you have an addictive personality, most people don’t fall into this category. Once you have a better understanding of addiction, you’ll be able to answer whether or not your personality is addictive.
Addiction isn’t something one can control on their own without addiction rehab programs. Addiction is a chronic disease that requires some level of maintenance to prevent relapse.
Understanding the Brain and Addiction
Addiction isn’t necessarily a substance problem, but rather a cognitive dopamine regulation malfunction. Dopamine is a pleasurable chemical the brain creates to ensure the repetition of certain, rewarding activities. Those who develop an addiction can’t properly shut down dopamine flow. Often receiving an excess flood of dopamine, their actions quickly become a desperate search for euphoria.
Therefore, people with addictive personalities have the potential to develop an addiction to anything. It’s not limited to drug and alcohol misuse. This is why there are so many addictions that have nothing to do with substance abuse. For example, some people have food, gambling, sex, or shopping addictions for the same reason that people have a drug or alcohol addiction.
Overall, there are similar cognitive functions at play in those with addictive personalities. The brain’s reward center is affected by these euphoric experiences and causes addictions in many individuals.
There is no generic definition of someone with an addictive personality. However, there are some traits that indicate a person has a high risk of developing an addiction.
Those with a higher addiction risk generally have some of the following traits:
- Family history of addiction – genetic traits or learned addiction pass down
- Co-occurrence of mental health disorders – pre-existing mental health issues lead to self-medication
- Partake in risky and adventurous activities – more likely to experiment due to impulse control problems
- Feel disconnected – social anxiety and difficulty forming relationships
- Overly cautious – more common in women, personality traits result in depression and loneliness
- Obsessive and compulsive – becoming too rigid with controlling impulses
- Trouble self-regulating – an inability to control thoughts, behaviors, and feelings
Assessing risk factors are a great way to prevent addiction or provide early intervention. If you or a loved one is struggling with risk factors and any addiction symptoms, reach out to a rehab center for inpatient or outpatient rehab programs and behavioral therapy.
Can an Addictive Personality Affect Recovery?
Understanding how addiction works is extremely helpful after drug and alcohol rehab. During treatment, your brain is healing. Instead of substances, it begins relying on healthier coping mechanisms to handle stressful triggers. In treatment, you’ll discover that alcohol and drugs were merely a symptom of an overarching problem.
Unfortunately, it’s common for people who don’t treat their addiction to find a new addiction to replace it, new relationships, or other activities. With no balance, life becomes unmanageable.
However, with the right addiction treatment, you’ll begin understanding how to manage your addictive personality. With various types of therapy, you’ll realize you use unhealthy methods to escape. You’ll build self-esteem as you confidently approach life after treatment, unafraid.
It’s never too late to get clean and start living your life again. San Antonio Recovery Center in San Antonio, Texas can help. We have various, advanced treatment programs in a supportive, therapeutic environment including:
- Dual diagnosis treatment
- Men’s rehab program
- Women’s rehab program
- 90-day extended treatment
- Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT)
- Dialectical behavior therapy (DBT)
- Acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT)