The DSM V or the Fifth Edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders is a book published by the American Psychiatric Association that helps mental healthcare professionals diagnose individuals with various psychological and developmental health conditions. It contains a diversity of mental illnesses, but some psychological health concerns are not included in it often because there is not enough research proving the condition is exactly what scientists think it is. For example, many types of common addictions are absent from the DSM V due to insufficient evidence they can truly fit within the formal definition of an addiction.
Even though technology addiction is not officially in the DSM V, over 8% of people in the United States find themselves unable to effectively control how much time they spend on the internet or using other forms of technology. Other reports say numbers of people addicted to the internet is closer to 38%. The varying statistics probably has to do with the fact that, because there is no official diagnosis for technology addiction, there is no official definition for what constitutes as technology addiction. You will probably be fine if you use the internet a lot unless your internet use starts to interfere with your other commitments. If you find that, no matter how many social and psychological problems your excessive internet use is causing, you still cannot find a way to stop going online, then you are probably addicted to the internet.
Additionally, technology addicts often find themselves experiencing feelings of euphoria every time they go online, while they experience withdrawal symptoms every time the log off. Internet addiction is only one type of technology addiction. You can also be addicted to television, radios, and social media. You can also be addicted to online shopping, but others believe that addiction to online shopping is actually a type of shopping addiction. Interestingly, shopping addictions are also not considered a formal diagnoses in the DSM V. Since the birth of the digital age, internet addiction is definitely the most common form of technology addiction, but it primarily affects people under the age of the 30. Older individuals are more likely to be addicted to other forms of technology.
Exercise has numerous positive benefits on your body and, if you engage in too much physical activity, your body can start to crave those benefits. Additionally, when you exercise, you start releasing endorphins into your bloodstream, which can make you feel incredibly happy and rewarded. Therefore, regular exercise can lead to an addiction. Lack of research has prevented the DSM V from including exercise addiction as a formal diagnoses. Since frequent workouts are usually considered a good thing, it can be extremely difficult to recognize when someone’s exercise routine is no longer a healthy habit. Usually, exercise addiction is only identified after you develop serious injuries because you were unable to take a break from exercise when you were in pain. By that point, the addiction is likely to have already affected your work life and social life.
Exercise addiction is also extremely difficult to treat because it is impossible to recommend abstinence. After all, everyone must engage in a little bit of physical activity in order to stay healthy. However, you probably will be told to take a break from working out before you can reintroduce physical activity into your daily routine, especially if you are suffering from concurrent health concerns including an eating disorder, body dysmorphia, or serious injury. Although eating disorders are not common among adult men, the number of incidences of eating disorders in men is actually rising and eating disorders in people of all genders are often accompanied by excessive and compulsive exercise habits.
Some people hate their job, while other people are extremely dedicated. However, there is a difference between people who are dedicated to work and people who feel the need to keep working, even if it starts to have a negative impact on their health and relationships. Between 5% and 25% of working adults in the United States report symptoms of being a workaholic. Unfortunately, it has historically been difficult to spot signs and symptoms in men because, traditionally, men have been expected to work a lot without being berated for ignoring other commitments like spending time with their family. However, in contemporary times, men are not always expected to be breadwinners, which means it is getting easier to identity when a man is working much more than he has to.
People addicted to work tend to be perfectionists when it comes to their work and they tend to experience anxiety when they feel as though they are not working hard enough. Additionally, many men work in order to avoid emotional pain, which usually is not good for your psychological health. Unfortunately, work addicts have a higher likelihood of burning out at work and having a low job satisfaction because their expectations are so high. Work addicts also put a lot of pressure on themselves, which means they tend to suffer from significant stress. This stress can end up being harmful to many aspects of your life.
While sex has a number of benefits, some people cannot control their need to have sex. The DSM V cannot include it because different communities have different boundaries between what is and is not considered sexually appropriate behavior. Often these boundaries depend on cultural norms and religious values, so researchers are still working on figuring out what type of sexual behaviors are more objectively inappropriate. Additionally, there is some debate about whether other similar informal diagnoses count as a sex addiction. For example, porn addiction and masturbation addiction might be types of sex addictions, but some say that they might be their own separate problem. However, if your sex life is excessive, uncontrollable, and even a little bit risky, then you might want to consider talking to a sex therapist or another healthcare provider about trying to regain control of your sexual cravings.
Additionally, your cravings should not get in the way of any other aspects of your life. It is possible that you live in a particularly restrictive community and you are simply feeling guilty about a perfectly healthy sex drive. However, maintaining a good relationship with the community that you live in is also important for your mental health. Therefore, you still might want to talk to someone about trying to balance your sex drive and your social life.
Being addicted to technology, the internet, shopping, exercise, work, sex, porn, and masturbation can be a legitimate problem, even if it is impossible to receive a formal diagnoses for these problems. Despite being excluded from the DSM V, it is still possible for you to get help because these addictions can be treated similarly to other compulsive behavior problems. Plenty of therapies and some programs exist to help you with these addictions, so do not hesitate to reach out to a healthcare provider if you have any concerns.