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Dependency and Addiction
What is addiction?
Are you unable to control your thoughts, feelings or emotions in regard to a substance or habit?
Do you know that this vice is causing you harm or getting out of control?
Are you helpless to change your actions?
If you have answered yes to any of the above questions you may be experiencing addiction.
According to NHS.uk nearly 2 million of us in the UK are fighting an addiction. So if you are one of these people, you really are not alone.
Addiction is when you no longer have control over your actions in relation to using, taking or doing something, to the point where it can become harmful to you. We most commonly think of addiction to alcohol, drugs, nicotine or gambling but addiction can also occur in relation to the following:
- The internet
Learn more about what addiction is by clicking here.
If you think you may be showing signs of dependency or addiction in these areas, it is very important to seek help.
Where to seek help
You can of course see your GP for help with your addiction but there are also charities and organisations that are dedicated to helping addicts overcome their problems.
- Alcohol addiction services
- Drug addiction services
- Read about Stopping Smoking
- General addiction help – contact the Samaritans on 08457 90 90 90
Alcohol addiction supportWe are all aware that we should only drink a certain amount of alcohol per week, but do you know how much? Click here to find out what the recommended units per week is.
Drug addiction support
If you are unsure of where to seek help for drug addiction, a good place to start can be to call the Frank drugs helpline on 0300 123 6600. Be open and honest, and they will guide you as to what steps you need to take and how to go about doing this.
Remember you will not be judged and you can be assured that your call with them is completely confidential.
Concern for somebody else
It can be very worrying for family and friends if they are worried about a person that they care about and their addiction. The main things to remember are:
- Look for key signs that they have a problem
- When talking to them, prepare what you are going to say in advance and avoid heated discussions
- Encourage them to seek professional help
For more detailed information please click here.
RecoveryRemember recovery is possible, watch the below video or click here to hear from George who has turned his life around. With the right help and support you can also get yourself on the road to recovery.
Things to remember
1. If you are caring for a person with addiction such as an alcoholic, this can take its toll on your own wellbeing. Click here to read more about how to care for your own needs as well.
2. Recovery is possible for everyone, even if it seems like the impossible!
3. Some people think that they don’t have a problem even when they do. It’s only you that can help yourself – seek help to understand if you have an addiction.
Word from our GP
“Alcohol is one addiction which is much more common place than you may think. Social drinking can quite easily turn into drinking of a level that is unhealthy which can lead to an addiction. Be aware. ” Dr Geraghty.
Read our coffee break interview with Dr Neil Geraghty on 'Taking the first steps to recovery' here.