Do you regularly drink alcohol or smoke cigarettes or eat too much? Even though you know it's not good for you, you can't stop? At the moment of consumption it feels really good, but when you try to give it up, something is missing - you become restless and don't feel well anymore? These could be signs of addiction.
By consuming various substances, such as tobacco, alcohol, illegal drugs or medication, a short-term positive effect is achieved and the initial situation, which is often perceived as unsatisfactory or stressful, is seemingly improved. The subsequent disillusionment sets a vicious circle in motion. The desire or need for a renewed high becomes the focus of the affected person's life.
Not only substances, but also different behaviors can lead to addiction: Eating addiction, gambling addiction, shopping addiction, internet addiction, sex addiction and many more.
Addiction is not a weakness of character, but a disease that can be detected in the brain. The basis of an addiction is a malfunction of the brain's reward system. Addictive substances activate different messenger substances that trigger a feeling of well-being or euphoria, for example. Thus, the brain very quickly perceives a certain addictive substance as a positive stimulus. If this stimulus is missing, the brain also lacks the reward. The result is an uncontrollable desire for the addictive substance.
How can I help
I am available to help you identify the root causes of your addiction and determine the underlying real need. Together we will break the link between the addictive substance and the positive feeling. To do this, I primarily use two proven treatment techniques: ImTT (link) and EMDR (link).
The ImTT approach: We identify the pleasant feeling that is linked to your addictive behavior and break this link. As a result, the addictive behavior loses its appeal, and the positive feeling disappears when you give in to the urge. In practice, you will find that alcohol or cigarettes no longer have the same appeal, or that food is only perceived as exciting in response to hunger, but not as a means to "feel good."
Often the feelings associated with the addictive substance are so-called "existential feelings" such as security, belonging or the feeling of being valuable. This becomes particularly attractive because of a deficit of this feeling that may have developed in childhood. The next step is to resolve this over-need in order to avoid relapse or a shift in addiction. To do this, we use the proven technique of ImTT. You can learn more about ImTT here (link) or in the video interview about ImTT (Youtube link).
The EMDR approach: If the ImTT approach does not achieve the desired results for you, treatment with EMDR is another option. Here, we explore what normal, everyday behaviors can produce similar positive feelings. Why might your brain not produce the same positive feelings in these "normal" situations as it does in other people? Often, hurtful events lie behind them. Through EMDR, we can "process" these events after the fact, so that your feelings change in situations where you previously used addictive substances to "get through" them. As a result, the use no longer seems so necessary.
In addition, I use a special EMDR treatment method in which you develop an intensive picture of yourself without addiction and work on the "triggers" (the triggers for addictive behavior). In this way, "craving" (craving) no longer arises so strongly in such situations.
Book your appointment now and let's work together on your recovery!