12 Normalized Addictions We Don’t Address

Addiction is taboo, but there are many that our society normalizes. From caffeine to social media, we accept these addictions as parts of our daily lives.

Yet, it is essential to recognize the impact these addictions have on our well-being. The more we raise awareness about these addictions, the more we help people make informed decisions. If required, they can even seek help. In this article, we will explore 12 such addictions and their consequences.


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Caffeine addiction is one of the most widespread in the world. People consume coffee daily, which can be problematic. Caffeine is a stimulant that improves alertness and concentration. The downside to this is excessive consumption. It leads to adverse side effects such as anxiety, insomnia, and dehydration.

Cell Phone

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Almost the entire world is engrossed in their mobile phones. 47% of Americans admit that they are addicted to their phones.

They check their phones throughout the day. Unfortunately, phone addiction leads to decreased productivity and irregular sleep patterns. It also strains interpersonal relationships as virtual connections often hamper real-life interaction. It would help to use your phone sparingly to avoid the broad spectrum of problems.


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According to a study by Harvard, people who got 17% to 21% of their calories from added sugar had a 38% higher risk of dying from cardiovascular disease compared with those who consumed 8% of their calories as added sugar.

The highly addictive sugar is often added to foods that don’t even need them. However, excessive sugar consumption makes it easier to gain weight. It also causes tooth decay and liver disease. Even though we normalize sugar consumption, it’s harmful in reality. Most people are still unaware of the adverse side effects of sugar consumption.


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Yes, shopping is an addiction, too. If you suffer from shopping addiction, you will indulge in compulsive buying even if the items are not required.

Approximately 5-8% of the worldwide population suffers from compulsive buying disorder, and 33% of compulsive buyers have debt that exceeds $10,000.


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Alcohol addiction, or alcoholism, is a severe issue. Almost 100,000 people die every year in the USA due to alcohol addiction.

It causes health issues, deaths as well as financial struggles.


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According to Yala Medicine, Gambling disorder affects as many as 1% of Americans who can’t stop despite the consequences.

Gambling almost always leads to debt and causes financial challenges. The gambler doesn’t necessarily understand when the addiction hits but once it does, there’s rarely any coming back.

Binge watching

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Consuming content for hours without a break constitutes binge-watching. People caught in this addiction feel a compulsive need to consume content even if it interferes with their work or personal lives. Many people mess up their work lives and sleep schedules. Their personal lives are affected, too, as they have to catch up with their favorite TV shows and movies.

It is one of the fastest-growing addictions among the masses is binge-watching. In fact, 60% of Americans who use on-demand streaming services binge-watch.


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People whose sense of status is deeply attached to the items they buy suffer from materialism. It eventually leads to overspending, debt, and other financial problems. The constant pursuit of showing off also takes a toll mentally.

Fast Food

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Fast food, mainly processed snacks, has become a dominant part of our modern diet. While you sometimes indulge in the occasional treat, dependency on these junk foods is harmful. It develops into an addiction. You gain unnecessary weight and create the risk of chronic diseases.

According to Addiction Help, food addiction occurs in 14% of adults and 12% of adolescents in the US.

Social approval

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Seeking validation from society is also a form of addiction. It results in behaviors aimed at pleasing others, which leads to low self-esteem and a lack of authenticity. Pursuing external validation gives way to a cycle of people-pleasing actions, which diminishes our self-worth and keeps us from being our real selves.


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According to Game Quitters, 8.5% of youths aged between 8-18 suffer from gaming disorder.

It is one of the fastest-growing addictions is gaming, especially among young people. Millions of people have become addicted to mobile phone games or video games. There are up to 6 million people in the USA, to be exact.

The ones addicted are hooked to constant gaming to the point where it equally affects their work and personal lives. Gaming addiction results in lower productivity and an extremely irregular sleep routine. If you have a gaming addiction, be wary of particularly strained relationships with others, as well.


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A surprising addition to the list, exercising often turns into an addiction. It is different from being a so-called ‘gym freak’.

If you’re addicted to exercising, you feel a compulsive need to work out, even if there’s fatigue or an injury. Exercise addiction leads to physical injuries and mental health problems. In severe cases, it also causes strained interpersonal relationships.

Several studies have shown that 7% to 42% of athletes suffer from an exercise addiction.

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