Special Health Reports

Overcoming Addiction: Paths toward recovery

Dear Reader: For many years, experts believed that only powerful drugs that co-opted the brain caused addiction. More recently, we’ve recognized that excessive versions of normal behaviors such as gambling, shopping, and sex also can lead to addiction. The notion that pleasure-seeking exclusively drives addiction also has fallen by the wayside. We now think that people often engage in addictive activities to escape discomfort — both physical and emotional. …

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