Addiction Explained by an Adorable Kiwi
Has Our Addiction to Technology Gone Too Far?
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The American Society of Addiction Medicine defines addiction as a "chronic disease of brain reward, motivation, memory and related circuitry ... characterized by the inability to stop, cravings, and most importantly, a lack of recognition of significant problems with their behaviors." As more substances and behaviors are being recognized as legitimate subjects of addiction by professionals, however, so it self-diagnosis of addiction to inconsequential things -- stuff as benign as cupcakes and Facebook. People seem to be addicted to being addicted according to Psychology Today. So how does one ascertain what's a legitimate addiction and what's a pseudo-addiction fueled by this growing trend of addiction addiction?
Addiction to Facebook is an extremely common self-diagnosis. Scientists say it's really more of a lack of motivation to stay off Facebook rather than legitimate damage to a person's brain reward system around checking Facebook. Psychology Today author David Ley blames this rampant "addiction to addiction" to society's inability to avoid the consequences of our actions. buttressed by the rush we get from seeing people on T.V. whose lives are legitimately destroyed by addiction. He blames the media's use of the concept of addiction to create moral panics, triggering fear and anxiety in consumers and thinks our dialogue around how we are using the very concept of addiction needs to be examined closely.
Do you agree with Dr. Ley's view of addiction? Do you think society throws the word "addict" around so much that it's almost at risk of losing its meaning? Let us know in the comments section down below.
The Addictive Society (via Psychology Today)
"The numbers of things that we are potentially at risk of becoming addicted to is a staggering list, which makes one wonder if there is anything out there that is not seen as potentially addictive."
What Facebook Addiction Looks Like in the Brain (via Live Science)
"For many Facebook users, the urge to like a kitten video or snoop on a high-school flame is almost irresistible."
What Is Addiction? (via Psychology Today)
"Addiction is a condition that results when a person ingests a substance (e.g., alcohol,cocaine, nicotine) or engages in an activity (e.g., gambling, sex, shopping) that can be pleasurable but the continued use/act of which becomes compulsive and interferes with ordinary life responsibilities, such as work, relationships, or health."
Gamers Are Dying in Taiwan's Internet Cafes (via Vice.com)
"Hsieh would often disappear for days at a time inside an internet cafe in Kaohsiung, the second-largest city in Taiwan. But on January 8, after binging for three days straight on computer games, he collapsed. He wasn't discovered until hours later, after his body had already begun to stiffen. As medics and police filled the cafe to retrieve Hsieh's carcass, other customers barely looked up from their screens. At the hospital, doctors determined he died of cardiac arrest."