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Special Issue "Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity"

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A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (20 October 2011)

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Steven Y. Sussman

Institute for Health Promotion and Disease Prevention Research, University of Southern California, Soto Street Building, Room 302, 2001 N. Soto Street, Los Angeles, CA 90032-3628, USA
Phone: 1-323-442-8220

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Researchers and practitioners have discussed the existence of substance and behavioral addictions. In general, they have agreed that individuals may fall victim to maladaptive, repetitive patterns of behavior involving recreational drugs (e.g., tobacco, alcohol, illicit drugs), or other behaviors (e.g., gambling, the internet, binge eating, shopping, workaholism, exercise addiction, love, or sex), that reflect attempts at appetitive physiological outcomes but result eventually in negative outcomes. Research over the last two decades suggests that a wide range of substance and behavioral addictions may serve similar functions. Overall, 12-month prevalence of an addiction among adults in the U.S. based on 11 addictions listed above recently has been estimated to be 46% based on an exhaustive review of the literature. As such, it may be useful to think of the addictions in terms of problems of lifestyle as well as of person. Yet, “co-occurrence” of addictions has been reported among only a minority of sufferers, and is estimated to be approximately 23%. “Addiction specificity” pertains to a phenomenon in which one pattern of addictive behaviors may be acquired whereas another is not. Differential patterns of addiction may be a function of such variables as accessibility, intrinsic appetitive effects, differential socialization, and outcome expectations. The present Special Issue examines addiction co-occurrence and addiction specificity across several addictive behaviors. The goal of the Issue is to shed light on what the mediation might be of addiction co-occurrence and specificity.

Prof. Dr. Steven Y. Sussman
Guest Editor

A booklet of this SI can be found here:
http://www.mdpi.com/files/si/drug_addiction/drug_addiction_SI_v16_prefaceinToC-final.pdf

Keywords

  • addiction co-occurrence
  • addiction specificity
  • substance addiction
  • behavioral addiction

Published Papers (11 papers)

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Editorial

Jump to: Research, Review

Open AccessEditorial Considering the Definition of Addiction
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(10), 4025-4038; doi:10.3390/ijerph8104025
Received: 21 September 2011 / Accepted: 17 October 2011 / Published: 20 October 2011
Cited by 22 | PDF Full-text (260 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The definition of addiction is explored. Elements of addiction derived from a literature search that uncovered 52 studies include: (a) engagement in the behavior to achieve appetitive effects, (b) preoccupation with the behavior, (c) temporary satiation, (d) loss of control, and (e) [...] Read more.
The definition of addiction is explored. Elements of addiction derived from a literature search that uncovered 52 studies include: (a) engagement in the behavior to achieve appetitive effects, (b) preoccupation with the behavior, (c) temporary satiation, (d) loss of control, and (e) suffering negative consequences. Differences from compulsions are suggested. While there is some debate on what is intended by the elements of addictive behavior, we conclude that these five constituents provide a reasonable understanding of what is intended by the concept. Conceptual challenges for future research are mentioned. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)

Research

Jump to: Editorial, Review

Open AccessArticle Concurrent and Predictive Relationships Between Compulsive Internet Use and Substance Use: Findings from Vocational High School Students in China and the USA
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(3), 660-673; doi:10.3390/ijerph9030660
Received: 29 December 2011 / Revised: 25 January 2012 / Accepted: 17 February 2012 / Published: 23 February 2012
Cited by 13 | PDF Full-text (378 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Purpose: Compulsive Internet Use (CIU) has increasingly become an area of research among process addictions. Largely based on data from cross-sectional studies, a positive association between CIU and substance use has previously been reported. This study presents gender and country-specific longitudinal findings [...] Read more.
Purpose: Compulsive Internet Use (CIU) has increasingly become an area of research among process addictions. Largely based on data from cross-sectional studies, a positive association between CIU and substance use has previously been reported. This study presents gender and country-specific longitudinal findings on the relationships between CIU and substance use. Methods: Data were drawn from youth attending non-conventional high schools, recruited into two similarly implemented trials conducted in China and the USA. The Chinese sample included 1,761 students (49% male); the US sample included 1,182 students (57% male) with over half (65%) of the US youth being of Hispanic ethnicity. Path analyses were applied to detect the concurrent and predictive relationships between baseline and one-year follow-up measures of CIU level, 30-day cigarette smoking, and 30-day binge drinking. Results: (1) CIU was not positively related with substance use at baseline. (2) There was a positive predictive relationship between baseline CIU and change in substance use among female, but not male students. (3) Relationships between concurrent changes in CIU and substance use were also found among female, but not male students. (4) Baseline substance use did not predict an increase in CIU from baseline to 1-year follow-up. Conclusions: While CIU was found to be related to substance use, the relationship was not consistently positive. More longitudinal studies with better measures for Internet Addiction are needed to ascertain the detailed relationship between Internet addiction and substance use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)
Open AccessArticle Long-Term Effects of Self-Control on Alcohol Use and Sexual Behavior among Urban Minority Young Women
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2012, 9(1), 1-23; doi:10.3390/ijerph9010001
Received: 28 September 2011 / Revised: 11 December 2011 / Accepted: 19 December 2011 / Published: 23 December 2011
Cited by 11 | PDF Full-text (436 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
High risk alcohol use and sexual behaviors peak in young adulthood and often occur in the same individuals. Alcohol use has been found to impair decision-making and contribute to high risk sexual activity. However, the association between alcohol use and risky sexual [...] Read more.
High risk alcohol use and sexual behaviors peak in young adulthood and often occur in the same individuals. Alcohol use has been found to impair decision-making and contribute to high risk sexual activity. However, the association between alcohol use and risky sexual behavior may also reflect enduring individual differences in risk taking, sociability, self-control, and related variables. Both behaviors can serve similar functions related to recreation, interpersonal connection, and the pursuit of excitement or pleasure. The present study examined the extent to which high risk drinking and sexual behavior clustered together in a sample of urban minority young adult women, a demographic group at elevated risk for negative outcomes related to sexual health. We tested whether psychosocial functioning measured at the beginning of high school predicted classes of risk behaviors when girls were tracked longitudinally into young adulthood. Latent class analysis indicated three distinct profiles based on high risk drinking and sexual behavior (i.e., multiple sex partners) in young adulthood. The largest class (73% of the sample) reported low levels of risky drinking and sexual behavior. The next largest class (19%) reported high risk drinking and low risk sexual behavior, and the smallest class (8%) reported high levels of both behaviors. Compared to women from other racial/ethnic groups, black women were more likely to be categorized in the high risk drinking/low risk sex class. Multinomial logistic regression indicated that self-control in adolescence had a broad and enduring protective effect on risk behaviors eight years later and was associated with a greater probability of being in the low risk drinking/low risk sex class. Findings are discussed in terms of understanding the phenotypic expressions of risk behavior as they relate to early psychosocial development and the long-term protective function of self-control in reducing high risk drinking and sexual behaviors. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)
Open AccessArticle Extensive Internet Involvement—Addiction or Emerging Lifestyle?
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(12), 4488-4501; doi:10.3390/ijerph8124488
Received: 24 October 2011 / Revised: 25 November 2011 / Accepted: 28 November 2011 / Published: 2 December 2011
Cited by 16 | PDF Full-text (309 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
In the discussions for the future DSM-5, the Substance-Related Disorders Work Group has been addressing “addiction-like” behavioral disorders such as “Internet addiction” to possibly be considered as potential additions for the diagnostic system. Most research aiming to specify and define the concept [...] Read more.
In the discussions for the future DSM-5, the Substance-Related Disorders Work Group has been addressing “addiction-like” behavioral disorders such as “Internet addiction” to possibly be considered as potential additions for the diagnostic system. Most research aiming to specify and define the concept of Internet addiction (or: Excessive/Compulsive/Problematic Internet Use—PIU), takes its point of departure in conventional terminology for addiction, based in established DSM indicators. Still, it is obvious that the divide between characteristics of addiction and dimensions of new lifestyles built on technological progress is problematic and far from unambiguous. Some of these research areas are developing from the neurobiological doctrine of addiction as not being tied to specific substances. The concept of “behavioral addictions”, based on biological mechanisms such as the reward systems of the brain, has been launched. The problems connected to this development are in this study discussed and reflected with data from a Swedish survey on Internet use (n = 1,147). Most Swedes (85%) do use the Internet to some degree. The prevalence of excessive use parallels other similar countries. Respondents in our study spend (mean value) 9.8 hours per week online at home, only 5 percent spend more than 30 hours per week. There are both positive and negative social effects at hand. Many respondents have more social contacts due to the use of Internet, but there is a decline in face-to-face contacts. About 40% of the respondents indicate some experience of at least one problem related to Internet use, but only 1.8% marked the presence of all problems addressed. Most significant predictors for problem indicators, except for age, relate to “time” and time consuming activities such as gaming, other activities online or computer skills. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)
Open AccessArticle High Calorie, Low Nutrient Food/Beverage Intake and Video Gaming in Children as Potential Signals for Addictive Behavior
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(12), 4406-4424; doi:10.3390/ijerph8124406
Received: 28 September 2011 / Revised: 22 November 2011 / Accepted: 22 November 2011 / Published: 29 November 2011
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (436 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Little is known about the co-occurrence of health risk behaviors in childhood that may signal later addictive behavior. Using a survey, this study evaluated high calorie, low nutrient HCLN intake and video gaming behaviors in 964 fourth grade children over 18 months, [...] Read more.
Little is known about the co-occurrence of health risk behaviors in childhood that may signal later addictive behavior. Using a survey, this study evaluated high calorie, low nutrient HCLN intake and video gaming behaviors in 964 fourth grade children over 18 months, with stress, sensation-seeking, inhibitory control, grades, perceived safety of environment, and demographic variables as predictors. SEM and growth curve analyses supported a co-occurrence model with some support for addiction specificity. Male gender, free/reduced lunch, low perceived safety and low inhibitory control independently predicted both gaming and HCLN intake. Ethnicity and low stress predicted HCLN. The findings raise questions about whether living in some impoverished neighborhoods may contribute to social isolation characterized by staying indoors, and HCLN intake and video gaming as compensatory behaviors. Future prevention programs could include skills training for inhibitory control, combined with changes in the built environment that increase safety, e.g., implementing Safe Routes to School Programs. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)
Open AccessArticle Generational Association Studies of Dopaminergic Genes in Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS) Subjects: Selecting Appropriate Phenotypes for Reward Dependence Behaviors
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(12), 4425-4459; doi:10.3390/ijerph8124425
Received: 26 October 2011 / Revised: 23 November 2011 / Accepted: 23 November 2011 / Published: 29 November 2011
Cited by 17 | PDF Full-text (523 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Abnormal behaviors involving dopaminergic gene polymorphisms often reflect an insufficiency of usual feelings of satisfaction, or Reward Deficiency Syndrome (RDS). RDS results from a dysfunction in the “brain reward cascade,” a complex interaction among neurotransmitters (primarily dopaminergic and opioidergic). Individuals with a family history of alcoholism or other addictions may be born with a deficiency in the ability to produce or use these neurotransmitters. Exposure to prolonged periods of stress and alcohol or other substances also can lead to a corruption of the brain reward cascade function. We evaluated the potential association of four variants of dopaminergic candidate genes in RDS (dopamine D1 receptor gene [DRD1]; dopamine D2 receptor gene [DRD2]; dopamine transporter gene [DAT1]; dopamine beta-hydroxylase gene [DBH]). Methodology: We genotyped an experimental group of 55 subjects derived from up to five generations of two independent multiple-affected families compared to rigorously screened control subjects (e.g., N = 30 super controls for DRD2 gene polymorphisms). Data related to RDS behaviors were collected on these subjects plus 13 deceased family members. Results: Among the genotyped family members, the DRD2 Taq1 and the DAT1 10/10 alleles were significantly (at least p < 0.015) more often found in the RDS families vs. controls. The TaqA1 allele occurred in 100% of Family A individuals (N = 32) and 47.8% of Family B subjects (11 of 23). No significant differences were found between the experimental and control positive rates for the other variants. Conclusions: Although our sample size was limited, and linkage analysis is necessary, the results support the putative role of dopaminergic polymorphisms in RDS behaviors. This study shows the importance of a nonspecific RDS phenotype and informs an understanding of how evaluating single subset behaviors of RDS may lead to spurious results. Utilization of a nonspecific “reward” phenotype may be a paradigm shift in future association and linkage studies involving dopaminergic polymorphisms and other neurotransmitter gene candidates. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)
Open AccessArticle Clarifying Exercise Addiction: Differential Diagnosis, Co-occurring Disorders, and Phases of Addiction
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(10), 4069-4081; doi:10.3390/ijerph8104069
Received: 6 September 2011 / Revised: 8 October 2011 / Accepted: 17 October 2011 / Published: 21 October 2011
Cited by 21 | PDF Full-text (199 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This paper sets out to clarify the unique features of exercise addiction. It begins by examining how this addiction can be distinguished from compulsions and impulse control disorders both of which, like an addiction, involve excessive behavior that creates adverse effects. Assessment [...] Read more.
This paper sets out to clarify the unique features of exercise addiction. It begins by examining how this addiction can be distinguished from compulsions and impulse control disorders both of which, like an addiction, involve excessive behavior that creates adverse effects. Assessment of exercise addiction also requires that clinicians be attuned to other forms of excessive behavior, especially eating disorders that can co-occur with exercise. Finally in an effort to clarify exercise addiction, this paper uses the four phases of addiction to examine the attributes of exercise that define it as a healthy habit distinct from an addiction. The paper ends with a discussion of the implications of these topics for effective assessment and treatment. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)
Open AccessArticle Patterns of and Motivations for Concurrent Use of Video Games and Substances
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(10), 3999-4012; doi:10.3390/ijerph8103999
Received: 24 August 2011 / Revised: 6 October 2011 / Accepted: 12 October 2011 / Published: 19 October 2011
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (357 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
“Behavioral addictions” share biological mechanisms with substance dependence, and “drug interactions” have been observed between certain substances and self-reinforcing behaviors. This study examines correlates of patterns of and motivations for playing video games while using or feeling the effects of a substance [...] Read more.
“Behavioral addictions” share biological mechanisms with substance dependence, and “drug interactions” have been observed between certain substances and self-reinforcing behaviors. This study examines correlates of patterns of and motivations for playing video games while using or feeling the effects of a substance (concurrent use). Data were drawn from a nationally-representative survey of adult Americans who “regularly” or “occasionally” played video games and had played for at least one hour in the past seven days (n = 3,380). Only recent concurrent users’ data were included in analyses (n = 1,196). Independent variables included demographics, substance use frequency and problems, game genre of concurrent use (identified by looking titles up in an industry database), and general game playing variables including problem video game play (PVP), consumer involvement, enjoyment, duration, and frequency of play. Exploratory factor analysis identified the following dimensions underlying patterns of and motivations for concurrent use: pass time or regulate negative emotion, enhance an already enjoyable or positive experience, and use of video games and substances to remediate each other’s undesirable effects. Multivariate regression analyses indicated PVP and hours/day of video game play were associated with most patterns/motivations, as were caffeine, tobacco, alcohol, marijuana, and painkiller use problems. This suggests that concurrent use with some regular situational pattern or effect-seeking motivation is part of the addictive process underlying both PVP and substance dependence. Various demographic, game playing, game genre of concurrent use, and substance use variables were associated with specific motivations/patterns, indicating that all are important in understanding concurrent use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)
Open AccessArticle Playing Video Games While Using or Feeling the Effects of Substances: Associations with Substance Use Problems
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(10), 3979-3998; doi:10.3390/ijerph8103979
Received: 19 August 2011 / Revised: 13 October 2011 / Accepted: 13 October 2011 / Published: 18 October 2011
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (754 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This study tested the hypothesis that playing video games while using or feeling the effects of a substance—referred to herein as “concurrent use”—is related to substance use problems after controlling for substance use frequency, video gaming as an enthusiastic hobby, and demographic [...] Read more.
This study tested the hypothesis that playing video games while using or feeling the effects of a substance—referred to herein as “concurrent use”—is related to substance use problems after controlling for substance use frequency, video gaming as an enthusiastic hobby, and demographic factors. Data were drawn from a nationally representative online survey of adult video gamers conducted by Knowledge Networks, valid n = 2,885. Problem video game playing behavior was operationalized using Tejeiro Salguero and Bersabé Morán’s 2002 problem video game play (PVP) measure, and measures for substance use problems were taken from the National Survey of Drug Use and Health (NSDUH). Separate structural equation modeling analyses were conducted for users of caffeine, tobacco, alcohol, and marijuana. In all four models, concurrent use was directly associated with substance use problems, but not with PVP. Video gaming as an enthusiastic hobby was associated with substance use problems via two indirect paths: through PVP for all substances, and through concurrent use for caffeine, tobacco, and alcohol only. Results illustrate the potential for “drug interaction” between self-reinforcing behaviors and addictive substances, with implications for the development of problem use. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)
Open AccessArticle A Framework for the Specificity of Addictions
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(8), 3399-3415; doi:10.3390/ijerph8083399
Received: 24 July 2011 / Accepted: 5 August 2011 / Published: 18 August 2011
Cited by 21 | PDF Full-text (262 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Research over the last two decades suggests that a wide range of substance and behavioral addictions may serve similar functions. Yet, co-occurrence of addictions has only been reported among a minority of addicts. “Addiction specificity” pertains to a phenomenon in which one [...] Read more.
Research over the last two decades suggests that a wide range of substance and behavioral addictions may serve similar functions. Yet, co-occurrence of addictions has only been reported among a minority of addicts. “Addiction specificity” pertains to a phenomenon in which one pattern of addictive behaviors may be acquired whereas another is not. This paper presents the PACE model as a framework which might help explain addiction specificity. Pragmatics, attraction, communication, and expectation (PACE) variables are described, which may help give some direction to future research needs in this arena. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)

Review

Jump to: Editorial, Research

Open AccessReview Online Social Networking and Addiction—A Review of the Psychological Literature
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2011, 8(9), 3528-3552; doi:10.3390/ijerph8093528
Received: 9 March 2011 / Revised: 12 August 2011 / Accepted: 22 August 2011 / Published: 29 August 2011
Cited by 154 | PDF Full-text (286 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Social Networking Sites (SNSs) are virtual communities where users can create individual public profiles, interact with real-life friends, and meet other people based on shared interests. They are seen as a ‘global consumer phenomenon’ with an exponential rise in usage within the [...] Read more.
Social Networking Sites (SNSs) are virtual communities where users can create individual public profiles, interact with real-life friends, and meet other people based on shared interests. They are seen as a ‘global consumer phenomenon’ with an exponential rise in usage within the last few years. Anecdotal case study evidence suggests that ‘addiction’ to social networks on the Internet may be a potential mental health problem for some users. However, the contemporary scientific literature addressing the addictive qualities of social networks on the Internet is scarce. Therefore, this literature review is intended to provide empirical and conceptual insight into the emerging phenomenon of addiction to SNSs by: (1) outlining SNS usage patterns, (2) examining motivations for SNS usage, (3) examining personalities of SNS users, (4) examining negative consequences of SNS usage, (5) exploring potential SNS addiction, and (6) exploring SNS addiction specificity and comorbidity. The findings indicate that SNSs are predominantly used for social purposes, mostly related to the maintenance of established offline networks. Moreover, extraverts appear to use social networking sites for social enhancement, whereas introverts use it for social compensation, each of which appears to be related to greater usage, as does low conscientiousness and high narcissism. Negative correlates of SNS usage include the decrease in real life social community participation and academic achievement, as well as relationship problems, each of which may be indicative of potential addiction. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Substance and Behavioral Addictions: Co-Occurrence and Specificity)

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