What Are the Different Types of Addictions That Are Diagnosed Today?

In the last year, 19.4% of Americans have used illegal drugs or misused prescription ones. Much of this goes beyond recreational use, as figures for addiction problems are on the rise. If you feel like you are becoming dependent, how do you get clean?

Part of the process is spotting when compulsive behavior becomes a problem. Read on as we discuss the types of addictions and how to overcome them.

Types of Addictions

Addiction can be separated into two camps. These are chemical and behavioral.


Chemical addictions are also known as physical. They are repetitive tasks that involve addiction to a substance that can alter the chemical makeup of the body. This will introduce brief periods of happiness.

Within the chemical addictions umbrella, most can be grouped into a further three subcategories. These are alcohol, illegal drugs, and prescription drugs. Some of the most common substances are listed below.

  • Alcohol
  • Nicotine
  • Opioids
  • Cannabis
  • Cocaine
  • Amphetamines
  • Hallucinogens
  • Steroids

Alcohol is arguably the most common. It will start with social drinking and then escalate. Before long, the addict can find themself dependent on it or conducting regular, heavy drinking.

Illegal drug addiction works similarly but can have a much quicker path from recreational use to addiction. Controlled substances will cause short-term euphoria by altering chemicals in the brain. This can cause long-term damage.

Prescription drug addiction is the misuse of medicines that have been approved by the FDA. Addictions may occur after the original problem has subsided or through misuse.


Behavioral addictions do not rely on a substance. Instead, they are an action that provides brief feelings of happiness. When the person needs that feeling to function it becomes an addiction.

These compulsive behaviors are far-reaching. Some of the more popular ones are listed below.

  • Gambling
  • Gaming
  • Food
  • Sex
  • Internet
  • Work
  • Shopping

Gambling is arguably the most common. However, there are some questions as to if certain categories are simply cases of impulse control disorder or severe addiction.

Forms of Addiction Treatment

There are many different ways to facilitate addiction recovery and not all of them involve going to rehab. For serious or recurring problems attending the best rehabilitation center you can afford is always a great step. You can read more about rehabilitation centers at soberlifesd.com.

Within addiction centers, intense therapy will take place. You can also get this by attending set meetings with a counselor outside of rehab. This can help explore the reasons behind addictive behavior.

Medication can also help in some cases. As many substances alter the chemicals in the body, the right medication can become a substitute that slowly turns the body back to normal.

Getting Help

Now you know the types of addictions, you may have a better understanding. If you believe you or a loved one are addicted, then discuss getting help. Start with your regular doctor for advice.

If you found this article informative, we have many more to help. From medical assistance to healthy living, we can get you back on track in the coming year.