Drug Addiction, Gambling, And Other Mental Disorders

Drug Addiction, Gambling, And Other Mental Disorders

This document is a generally accepted statistical classification of medical diagnoses, which is used in healthcare in different countries for the uniformity of treatment methods and diagnosis.

Within our work, of particular interest to us is the section related to clinical descriptions and diagnostic recommendations for mental health, behavioral and neurodevelopmental disorders associated with the use and abuse of psychoactive substances.

But let’s start with the main thing. What is alcoholism and drug addiction according to WHO.

What is alcoholism and drug addiction?

In the classifier, which is still valid today, a whole section is devoted to determining the symptoms and severity of the course of diseases associated with the use and dependence on psychoactive substances. These include alcoholism and drug addiction.

These serious diseases are characterized by a combination of mental and somatic disorders, namely:

From a certain stage in the development of the disease, chronic diseases of the internal organs, as well as mental disorders, are added to them.

Dependence on psychoactive substances also changes the social life of a person, causing social and material damage.

Treatment of drug addiction and alcoholism

The treatment of drug addiction and alcoholism requires an integrated approach:

Each situation of an addict is special, so it is necessary to adhere to an individual treatment plan recommended by specialists: a narcologist, a psychiatrist, a psychologist.

Gambling addiction

In the new classifier, gambling addiction was also classified as a serious addictive disease.

In recent years, the popularity of online games has increased significantly, which has led to problems with excessive participation in games.

Gambling addiction is characterized by an inability to control the time spent on games, as well as an increase in negative consequences due to games, such as:

Gambling disorder leads to serious addiction and requires treatment, like other types of addiction.

Signs of gambling addiction

The worst thing is that teenagers often suffer from gambling addiction. The main task of the family is to provide a comprehensive close and seek help from a qualified psychologist.

Treatment of gambling addiction

 It is possible to cope with addiction only in cases of an integrated approach to treatment. And if everyone is well aware that alcohol or drug addiction requires mandatory drug therapy together with psychotherapeutic sessions, then in cases of gambling addiction.

People suffering from gambling disorder need psychological support. They also experience withdrawal and suffer emotionally.

Other mental disorders

In addition, the classifier also reflects such concomitant dependences of the disease as: catatonia, bipolar disorder, hoarding, complex post-traumatic disorder, prolonged mourning disorder. These diseases can act as consequences and as a catalyst for the emergence of various types of addiction, including alcohol, drugs or gambling.


Catatonia is one of the varieties of schizophrenia. And if in the previous version of the classifier the disease was one of the subtypes of schizophrenia, then in the new ICD-11, the catatonic syndrome is singled out as a separate disease.

This syndrome accompanies various mental disorders and is characterized by the following symptoms:

In the new classifier, this syndrome is considered in 3 states:

catatonia associated with mental disorders;

catatonia caused by the use of psychoactive substances;

secondary catatonia caused by various head injuries and other non-mental illnesses.

Bipolar II disorder

This disease is characterized by frequent changes in mood (affective disorders). In the new classifier, scientists have identified 2 types of disorders, depending on the severity of its course. Bipolar disorder is often diagnosed in people in the last stages of alcohol or drug addiction.


Pathological hoarding or Plushkin’s syndrome is characteristic of the last stages of alcohol addiction and is associated with an unbridled desire to accumulate things in view of their imaginary need.

Complex post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)

PTSD occurs after severe or prolonged stressful situations. Situations such as torture, domestic violence, physical or sexual abuse can trigger PTSD. Wanting to hide from obsessive memories, people seek solace in alcohol and drugs. Complex PTSD replaces the ICD-10 category of permanent personality changes after a traumatic experience.

lingering mourning disorder

This is a condition in which a person cannot cope with the loss reaction for a long period of time (more than 6 months). Situations, where this disorder can manifest, include the death of a loved one: partner, parent, child.

Leak symptoms can include: sadness, guilt, anger, denial, difficulty accepting death, feeling like a person has lost a part of themselves, inability to experience positive moods, loss of emotionality, and difficulty in social or other activities. 

Prolonged mourning disorder is also associated with the development of dependence on psychoactive substances, which greatly complicates treatment. Often, after the loss of loved ones, a person literally becomes an inveterate drunkard, in such a case, complex psychotherapeutic assistance and treatment is needed.


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