When we hear of the word ‘addiction’, substance abuse and alcoholism are always the first things that come to mind. We are also quite familiar with gambling and sex addiction. What we don’t realize though is that addiction can also take the form of seemingly harmless activities. There is such a thing as internet, work, and exercise addiction. These common activities can turn into addiction when an individual immerses himself into them to escape reality and persists in doing the activity regardless of the negative consequences.

All these forms of addiction though have essentially the same root cause – psychological disorder stemming from the environment including the family, peers, and the community. Naturally, the immediate family is the most affected when a family member falls into the clutches of addiction. They also play a pivotal role in an individual’s recovery from an addiction. However, family member may be powerless to effect any change in behaviour and need professional intervention. This is where institutions such as Morningside Recovery step in and help individuals in their road to recovery.

How are we to know when a family member or even just a friend has fallen into addiction and when professional help is necessary? One of the most common signs of addiction is isolation. An individual becomes so deeply engrossed in any of the different forms of addiction and withdraws from society. Has your child been spending numerous hours that may even stretch to days in front of his computer neglecting school work or even refusing to eat? This is a sure-sign of internet addiction. Escalating money troubles could also be a sign of addiction. Substance abuse, alcoholism, and gambling involve enormous amounts of cash. It is not uncommon to hear of a wealthy individual suddenly facing bankruptcy because he has spent much too many hours at the casino tables. These individuals feel compelled to engage in their addictive actions and find any means they can to sustain their addictions.

There are many more signs of addiction such as restlessness, problems at school or at work, drastic change in behaviour and neglected appearance. If you notice any of signs of addiction in a loved one, do not wait until he is so deeply entrenched in his addiction that he poses a risk to himself and to others. The earliest you intervene and seek professional help, the faster his step to recovery is.