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Public Service Announcement

Addictions Awareness Week: the ‘soft’ addictions

Nov 19, 2014
Process addictions are non-chemical addictions. It is common to hear these conditions referred to as behavioural addictions, ‘soft’ addictions, or process dependencies.

This piece produced in partnership with the Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit.

Process addictions are non-chemical addictions. It is common to hear these conditions referred to as behavioural addictions, ‘soft’ addictions, or process dependencies.  Process addiction remains a controversial subject requiring more research and discussion.

Similar to substance abuse, problems can occur long before addiction is present. There might be personal consequences to health, employment or finances and negative impacts to families and friends.  Additionally, these kinds of addictions can damage social or community relationships.

The American Society of Addiction Medicine says addiction is characterized by:

  • an inability to consistently abstain from the behaviour
  • impairment in impulse control relative to the addiction
  • cravings or increased ‘hunger’ for a reward/pleasurable experience
  • diminished recognition of significant problems with one’s behaviours and interpersonal relationships
  • a dysfunctional emotional response

We see what we want to see.

Significant others find themselves coping with their loved ones’ choices. The impact can be detrimental. Let’s offer support instead of criticism.

To get help for you or someone you care about, call 1-800-565-8603 or go to www.connexontario.ca.  Many services are free and help is available.

Brought to you by the Addictions Awareness Committee of Simcoe Muskoka:

Royal Victoria Regional Health Centre (www.rvh.on.ca)         

Orillia Soldiers Memorial Hospital (www.osmh.on.ca)

Canadian Mental Health Association, Simcoe County Branch (www.cmha.ca/branch_locations/simcoe-county-branch)

Addiction Outreach Muskoka Parry Sound (www.aomps.com)

Simcoe Muskoka District Health Unit (www.smdhu.org)

Waypoint Centre for Mental Health Care (www.waypointcentre.ca)

Part of the Simcoe Muskoka Alcohol and Other Drugs Strategy.

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