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Addiction Essentials

The Go-To Guide for Clinicians and Patients

15 July 2011


An up-to-date guide to the causes, diagnosis, and treatment of addictions.

Whether it’s to caffeine, nicotine, or alcohol, many of us suffer from at least one addiction. Carlton K. Erickson presents a comprehensive overview of the various types of addictions—covering both substance and nonsubstance addictions such as gambling, Internet use, and video games—and their diagnosis and treatment. This book sheds light upon the biological and environmental factors that cause addiction, reviews the various types of substance and nonsubstance addictions, and offers clinicians and patients hope for recovery.

Erickson examines alcohol, drugs that speed us up, drugs that slow us down, and how to recognize addictive behavior—such as exercise and videogame addiction—which may be less obvious. Other topics covered include alcohol and other drug pharmacology, neurophysiology of brain pathways, alcohol and drug interactions, adolescent drug use, drug use differences by gender and culture, and visual signs of drug use. Erickson presents various therapeutic methods for addressing addiction, including pharmacological interventions, individual or group therapy, twelve-step programs, and therapy involving family members. Finally, he reflects on the involvement of family and the risks and consequences of relapse.

Written by one of the country’s leading addiction specialists, this accessible, comprehensive book, is a go-to reference for your questions about addiction, and a friendly introduction to the diagnosis and treatment options.


"[A] fine assortment that should be considered for anyone fighting their own addictions or seeking to be a bastion of support in another's fight." — Midwest Book Review

"[W]ell written and well edited, a quick and engrossing read.... It includes valuable information on psychopharmacology of addictions including nicotine, and raises awareness of the role of psychiatric illness in addictions that is often entirely overlooked in books geared to addiction counselors and the lay public.... [G]ives tools to counselors that enhance their usual reliance on mutual help support groups and provides broader, more sophisticated options for individual, cognitive, behavioral, group, family, and relapse prevention approaches." — Journal of Psychiatric Practice

"Addiction Essentials neatly summarizes the current state of addictions counseling. It contains information that all counselors should know about contemporary addictions counseling and information they should be able to communicate to clients and clients’ families about the nature of addiction and available treatments." — Counseling Today

"Erickson has designed a resource that is both easy to use and offers direction to readers from varying disciplines. . .These descriptions, which address both use and abuse, offer both professionals and the public, a context for evaluation and direction. . . . The succinct organization of this guide makes it particularly useful in the clinical contacts. Overall, I found Addiction Essentials to be interest in content, refreshing in its clarity, and useful for a first resource, a review, or a reflection of professional work." — The Milton H. Erickson Foundation Newsletter

"Only now is science catching up with clinicians and sober/abstinent addicts to explain how addiction, abuse, and recovery work. Erickson's seminal guide allies the science to practice: clinicians and scientists alike should read it in order to start a new dialogue of wisdom with each other and increase recovery exponentially." — Deirdre Boyd, editor of AddictionToday and CEO of Addiction Recovery Foundation

"This book is excellent. Any clinician who has patients who need information about the topics in the book could provide them with this book." — American Journal of Forensic Psychology

Also By: Carlton K. Erickson View all by author...



157 x 236 mm • 202 pages


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