For most people, shopping is a balanced tour between seduction and necessity, but about 6% of young people, mostly women, face the inferno of “compulsive shopping” that dominates their lives and can damage their budgets.
Yasser Khazaal, professor at Lionel University and chief physician in the Department of Addiction Medicine at the University Medical Center Hospital in Lausanne, Switzerland, explains in a report published by the Swiss newspaper Lotan the details of this syndrome, and how its victims can get out of it with their internal desire and build a new relationship with consumption.
Johnny Depp’s most famous shopping addict
In the context of the shopping frenzy, the newspaper Johnny Depp (an American actor and film producer known for his love for exotic roles) gave an example of the most famous addicts on shopping, as this actor spent – according to the French economic magazine “Challenge” – $ 480 million in twenty years.
Johnny Depp – nicknamed “Debt” Johnny Depot – bought a farm in Kentucky, five villas in Beverly Hills, a coral island in the Bahamas, 45 luxury cars, seventy luxurious guitar, two hundred paintings by well-known artists, as well as a yacht costing 18 One million dollars, and its maintenance costs thirty thousand dollars per month, to which three hundred thousand dollars are added to the salaries of eighty employees working onboard the yacht.
This spending, which may make the reader dizzy, was more disturbing to the artist who was burdened by debts and became unable to bear his expenses and lives chased by creditors, according to the newspaper.
Young victims of shopping craze
And Johnny Depp does not represent the ordinary victims of addiction, one does not need to have a large bank account to succumb to this fever of shopping.
On the contrary, addiction scientist Yasser Khazal notes that the first attacks often begin at the age of 18, when young people have not reached financial stability, and therefore find themselves quickly and they face great difficulties, so they go to borrow and loans or worse, as they can They go to theft and transfer money to satisfy their addiction.
What worries Khazal is that “the first consultation does not happen often until ten years after the start of the crisis, after it is too late, given the grasp of this mad mania.”
The criteria for distinguishing greedy shopping
To determine the criteria that characterize a very greedy shopping addict, Dr. Khazal says that the first criterion relates to loss of control, where a person is in a state of tension that makes emotion precede sanity.
The second criterion is the priority occupied by this activity, where the shopper can spend hours searching the websites, bulletins, etc. to track a good deal.
Finally, the third criterion relates to the secondary difficulties that this disease generates, such as debts and loans, and the resulting lies, feelings of shame and loneliness.
The type of merchandise does not concern the addict
With regard to shopping addiction, the goods that the addict buys do not matter, and unlike collectors who are proud of their purchases, the addict does not only care about the purchase itself, and the moment of excitement that precedes the possession of the thing, and the rest that follows.
Khazal explained that it is the regions of the brain associated with emotion and reward that are activated at the time of the crisis, while the cerebral cortex tries to exercise its ability to control.
And given that the tired person tends to succumb to this fever more easily – according to Khazaal – many of these forced purchases take place at the end of the day, so shopping in the morning is one of the precautions while the patient is fighting this addiction.
Who is affected by this addiction?
Dr. Khazal explains that some of them are overburdened, others who have emotional fragility support themselves with these purchases, and they also seek to display their purchases in order to enhance their image in the eyes of those around them. Finally, there are addicts who have an immature relationship with advertising campaigns and are “easy prey” for marketers.
Although the goods do not matter to the addicts of buying, “women tend to buy clothes, shoes, make-up, jewelry, and household items. While men buy CDs, books, tools, computer equipment and cameras,” according to Khazaal, who sees the problem as manifested through “small, not expensive, purchases”. Pricey, but permanently repeated. ”
How to recover from the craze for purchase?
Addiction scientist Khazaal says that “the motivational approach and psychotherapy are the two preferred treatments”, where the person first talks about his conditions and motivations, and then the doctor asks the patient about the expected benefits and his feeling when buying and harassment, and through these discussions, the doctor chooses strategies to reduce the risks.
For example, the addict tries not to link between low spirits and purchases by developing other ways to regulate his emotions and needs, it can also give up carrying his bank cards, avoid passing tempting stores, ignore reading bulletins that display products and services, in addition to canceling subscribing to mailing lists and deactivating Consumption notices.
The most affected may request that they are placed under the care of a therapeutic administration during a sensitive period. Finally, the doctor concludes that it is also necessary to take into account possible concomitant diseases, such as anxiety or a mood disorder that will require additional specialized treatments.
Source: Swiss press