If you were to close your eyes and think about addiction for a moment or three, you would probably think about all those things you hear about in the media and on social media; things like drugs and smoking and gambling and whatnot. They can all ruin lives and not just the addict’s lives either. But these aren’t the only types of addiction out there.
In fact, it turns out that you can be addicted to almost anything, and we mean almost anything. That’s not to say you’re going to suddenly find yourself addicted to washing your car or chewing on leaves or something. However, addiction is an illness, and that makes it super-important you know there are certain things that can trigger this without you even knowing you suffered from addiction.
So, without further ado, here are some things you might not know you can be addicted to:
Okay, so you probably knew you can be addicted to alcohol. But what you might not have realized is that you need to have a couple of cold ones after every stressful day at work is a sign that you have a dependence on booze and a subtle fear of sobriety. Most people think alcoholics are easily identifiable because they act a certain way. But that’s not the case. The caricature is a myth. It can creep in, become a habit and wreak havoc on your health, even if it doesn’t influence your functions.
- The Internet
To a degree, most of us feel pretty dependent on the internet, using it to answer questions at the back of our brains, find out how to get from A to B, scrolling through Instagram to see how amazing everyone’s lives are and that sort of thing. But for some people, the internet can be a source of serious addiction – neglecting family conversations, friends and even the real-world in favor of online creations. They might even feel a certain pang of anxiety when not online. It’s not an epidemic yet, but with 8% of internet users suffering from this, it’s becoming a major problem.
- Healthy Eating
There is no denying that a balanced diet is crucial to leading a healthy life, but a line needs to be drawn somewhere or else “healthy” eating can become drastically unhealthy. Only eating foods you deem to be healthy can become an obsession and even an eating disorder, such as orthorexia nervosa. The problem with this is a myth. A lot of the foods people deem to be unhealthy are actually vital to us, such as fats. People systematically cut fats out of their diets, but we need this to live.
- Chewing Ice
Yup. For those that didn’t know, you can be addicted to chewing ice and, what’s more, there are dozens of reasons why. Iron deficiency can cause it, obsessive-compulsive disorder, stress, mental health issues, developmental disorders – it can all lead to a pretty serious addiction. Now you might be thinking, “there are worse things to be addicted to,” and you are right. But chewing on ice can lead to a sensation of being full, despite the person only eating something with no nutritional value.