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Member since: Sun Jan 8, 2006, 10:55 AM
Number of posts: 711

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Dependency Addiction and Causes

....when you get into addiction territory the opinions starts to differ with regards to what the causes of addiction are. Or more precisely: What is the cause of the deficit of self control in relation to the task. Why would an addict not be able to break the dependence on drugs? There are three basic flavors of theory for this:
1. Drugs are just so physiologically addictive that is takes more self control that most people can muster.

2. Drugs do damage to the brain that will weaken the level of self control sufficiently that there is no way back out of addiction. Or at least not an easy one.

3. A lack of self control from a variety of causes (including drug related ones) will tend to make any drug dependence an addiction. While this does not exclude physiological damages from addictive drugs playing, these are just seen as part of a broader picture and perhaps not very important ones.

Needs more work....

Thx! Its not ever going to get easy. But it is not impossible either. Well at least not if you dont

stumble around in complete darkness as seems to be what happens a lot.

Having moved the site yesterday (server problems..) i'm now back to writing and rewriting again.

I am going to have a go at the 4 stroke structure from a slightly more technical angle:

DD -> EFC -> RE -> ST -> DD....

DD = Delay Discounting or the tendency towards short term thinking/acting
EFC= Emotion Focused Coping or the tendency towards mending mood instead of mending practical situation
RE = Reduced Environment, or the tendency to make your life situation worse by your actions, and
ST = Stress, that shift your brain into short term thinking and DD.

The more technical version of the four phases will allow me to draw upon more established sources and give the model a better anchoring in biological and psychological thinking.

I also want to have another go at the link between shame and addiction: After just a quick glance is not at all clear why these should be connected, but when you start to consider that pretending and other "appearance management" is a big drain on regulation resources it becomes a bit less strange.

I was also reminded about the work on "Stigma" by Erwin Goffman way back in the 70'ties. My feeling is that the present models of addiction have big glaring hole just where the impact of your personal environment should be. KabathZinn and his stress model does a bit to help fill that gap, but he is a bit short on details. Perhaps I'm missing something, but at least I'm on the hunt for a better alternative.

In the medical model of addiction you don't need to account for any impact of the personal environment, because on that model addictive drugs are what makes you addicted.

So a central thing to argue is the impact of environment vs. the impact of drugs on self regulation capacity. As most people don't know much about brain physiology or executive function the medical model has won favor rather unopposed. That could change though.

So much to do.....

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