Addiction can be tricky to diagnose, but the presence of the four C's (craving, consequences, loss of control, and compulsion) is a good indication that an addiction is present.
One of the hallmarks of addiction is craving the substance or activity that you are addicted to. Craving is an intense need or desire for something. Learning to cope with cravings is an important skill to learn when recovering from an addiction, as cravings can be particularly intense in the early stage of recovery.
The negative consequences of addiction can range in severity and can affect every area of your life. Examples of negative consequence include the following:
One of the most important signs of addiction is losing control. You may want to stop and may be aware of the consequences of your addiction, but despite this, you continue the activity or using the substance you're addicted to. Some people may not be aware of loss of control; this is called denial.
Compulsion, unlike craving, is an unconscious drive. Compulsion for the addiction is such a high priority that it crowds out or endangers other, previously important priorities. The addiction becomes becomes the most important activity in your life.
If you think you might have an addiction or are on the way to having one, see your doctor or and addiction counsellor for an assessment.
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