Unique Types of Addiction
These are conditions that can be considered addictions in their own right. You may have heard of these conditions on television programs or documentaries. Like other types of addiction, these have components of compulsion and continuation despite the clear consequences.
Firstly, one of the most unique types of addiction is a behavior known as pica. This is a type of eating disorder that fits many of the criteria for addiction.
According to experts, pica is thought to be a symptom of anemia, digestive issues, or possible toxicity. When someone has pica, they will eat unconventional things that don’t have much nutritional value instead of typical or “normal” food. Examples include:
- Ice cubes
- Soil or dirt
- Paint or wall chips
Pica is a complicated disorder that may be harmless at first (depending on the substance or food), but can progress into an addiction. While eating ice is mostly safe, other things people may eat due to pica can be dangerous to their health.
Trichotillomania is the medical term for hair-pulling disorder. Similar to a behavioral addiction, trichotillomania involves strong compulsion and lack of self-control. For people with this disorder, pulling out hair from the scalp, eyebrows, or eyelashes brings a sense of pleasure or relief. Some people may also proceed to collect, chew, or eat the hair.
A sign that someone may be addicted to pulling out their hair is balding and hairless patches of skin. Stressful situations may increase the amount and frequency of hair pulling. People with this condition may go through great lengths to hide it or may not even notice that they have a problem.