If you’re concerned that you or someone you know has an addiction, it can be difficult to know for sure. There is an assessment that can be helpful to make this determination. It’s relevant to both substance and behavioral addictions. Just apply the three C’s:
Craving – the person has an intense, abnormal need to use their substance of choice or conduct the unhealthy behavior. It’s as if the person cannot do without it.
Compulsion – the person has an irresistible, repetitive urge to use or behave, especially against one’s wishes. The person is not in control and cannot resist.
Continued use despite the negative consequences – addiction has many serious negative consequences. It can cause loss of job, broken relationships, financial distress, and legal problems. The person continues to use or behave despite these negative consequences.
If you suspect an addiction is present, it’s critical that help is received as soon as possible. Contact an addiction specialist for the best outcome.
Michael Ferraro, LPC, LMFT, LCD