Compulsive buying disorder .. Do you buy things because you need them or are you forced to buy them?

Compulsive buying disorder
Compulsive buying disorder 

Compulsive buying disorder .. When buying and shopping turns from a source of happiness for some, to an obsession

Compulsive shopping disorder, or monomania, is excessive preoccupation or poor self-control and an obsession with shopping; So that the patient feels an irresistible and uncontrollable urge to buy things he may not need.

Compulsive buying is very similar to behavioral addictions, such as binge eating and gambling, and may often co-occur with other psychiatric illnesses such as depression, anxiety disorder and eating disorders.

People with compulsive shopping disorder experience stress and anxiety that are relieved, at least temporarily, by shopping. But this relief is temporary; As soon as the affected person completes the purchase, they are disappointed with themselves and depressed because of their apparent lack of control over their behaviour.

Purchasing is a real addiction; Often, people with compulsive shopping disorder can't stop thinking about going out shopping. They cannot control the desire to buy more things.

Some therapists explain that this compulsive disorder may be an unsuccessful attempt to deal with unbearable negative emotions. for example; The patient goes and spends hundreds of thousands of money, whether he is able or unable, as a way to get rid of his negative feelings; As soon as he brings the purchases home, he loses interest and returns to feeling depressed, empty, and bored. This is called compulsive behavior because the urge to shop and make purchases is irresistible. The individual feels that he has to go out and go to the stores to make all kinds of purchases even if they are completely unnecessary.

It may even be that the affected person frequently buys things they already own, and may store or not use them once they return home.

It may eventually come to the point of hoarding. A sick person keeps his purchases confidential and does not tell friends and family the details of his purchases because he may be criticized.

Unlike other addictions that take hold in adolescence; The addiction and obsession with buying often develops in the thirties when the patient has achieved financial independence.

Negative consequences of compulsive buying

Compulsive buying disorder may cause many problems and negative consequences such as:

  • Marital disputes.
  • Problems at work or at home because of shopping.
  • Financial difficulties due to uncontrolled shopping.
  • Spending too much time shopping for unnecessary things.

Other problems can include people being robbed or accumulating bad loans, in some cases bankruptcy or too much debt, as well as anxiety and a feeling that their lives are out of control.

What are the groups most at risk of developing this disorder?

Research indicates that females are nine times more likely to be infected than males.

One recent study shows that the prevalence of compulsive shopping disorder may also increase over time. Especially with the spread of advertising in every place and the abundance of temptations.

Another study also found that compulsive shoppers have some common traits such as:

  • Lack of confidence in themselves.
  • They suffer from some symptoms of obsessive-compulsive disorder.
  • They have a more impulsive behavior.
  • More likely to be addicted to alcohol, tobacco or drugs.
  • Those with a lower level of education.

Can compulsive buying disorder be treated?

The first steps of treatment include the patient's awareness of his condition and his desire to get rid of this addiction. The patient must also be evaluated first to see if he suffers from other diseases such as depression.

A psychiatrist diagnosing compulsive buying disorder should exercise caution. In bipolar disorder, the person may be experiencing the shopping activity associated with manic episodes. These episodes may look a lot like buying disorder.

There is some evidence that compulsive buying disorder responds to treatment with selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs). But the best and most effective treatment is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy, which has been shown to reduce symptoms in many compulsive shoppers.

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