Phenomenology and treatment of behavioural addictions

Jon E. Grant, Liana R.N. Schreiber, Brian L. Odlaug

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Behavioural addictions are characterized by an inability to resist an urge or drive resulting in actions that are harmful to oneself or others. Behavioural addictions share characteristics with substance and alcohol abuse, and in areas such as natural history, phenomenology, and adverse consequences. Behavioural addictions include pathological gambling, kleptomania, pyromania, compulsive buying, compulsive sexual behaviour, Internet addiction, and binge eating disorder. Few studies have examined the efficacy of pharmacological and psychological treatment for the various behavioural addictions, and therefore, currently, no treatment recommendations can be made.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)252-259
Number of pages8
JournalCanadian Journal of Psychiatry
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2013
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Copyright 2017 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • Binge eating
  • Compulsive sexual behaviour
  • Gambling
  • Impulse control
  • Internet use
  • Kleptomania
  • Pyromania
  • Treatment


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