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      Ten myths about work addiction

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          Abstract

          Background and aims

          Research into work addiction has steadily grown over the past decade. However, the literature is far from unified and there has been much debate on many different issues.

          Aim and methods

          This paper comprises a narrative review and focuses on 10 myths about work addiction that have permeated the psychological literature and beyond. The 10 myths examined are (a) work addiction is a new behavioral addiction, (b) work addiction is similar to other behavioral addictions, (c) there are only psychosocial consequences of work addiction, (d) work addiction and workaholism are the same thing, (e) work addiction exclusively occurs as a consequence of individual personality factors, (f) work addiction only occurs in adulthood, (g) some types of work addiction are positive, (h) work addiction is a transient behavioral pattern related to situational factors, (i) work addiction is a function of the time spent engaging in work, and (j) work addiction is an example of overpathogizing everyday behavior and it will never be classed as a mental disorder in the DSM.

          Results

          Using the empirical literature to date, it is demonstrated that there is evidence to counter each of the 10 myths.

          Conclusion

          It appears that the field is far from unified and that there are different theoretical constructs underpinning different strands of research.

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          Most cited references 128

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          A ‘components’ model of addiction within a biopsychosocial framework

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            Immune function in sport and exercise.

            Regular moderate exercise is associated with a reduced incidence of infection compared with a completely sedentary state. However, prolonged bouts of strenuous exercise cause a temporary depression of various aspects of immune function (e.g., neutrophil respiratory burst, lymphocyte proliferation, monocyte antigen presentation) that usually lasts approximately 3-24 h after exercise, depending on the intensity and duration of the exercise bout. Postexercise immune function dysfunction is most pronounced when the exercise is continuous, prolonged (>1.5 h), of moderate to high intensity (55-75% maximum O(2) uptake), and performed without food intake. Periods of intensified training (overreaching) lasting 1 wk or more may result in longer lasting immune dysfunction. Although elite athletes are not clinically immune deficient, it is possible that the combined effects of small changes in several immune parameters may compromise resistance to common minor illnesses, such as upper respiratory tract infection. However, this may be a small price to pay as the anti-inflammatory effects of exercise mediated through cytokines and/or downregulation of toll-like receptor expression are likely mediators of many of the long-term health benefits of regular exercise.
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              Introduction to behavioral addictions.

              Several behaviors, besides psychoactive substance ingestion, produce short-term reward that may engender persistent behavior, despite knowledge of adverse consequences, i.e., diminished control over the behavior. These disorders have historically been conceptualized in several ways. One view posits these disorders as lying along an impulsive-compulsive spectrum, with some classified as impulse control disorders. An alternate, but not mutually exclusive, conceptualization considers the disorders as non-substance or "behavioral" addictions. Inform the discussion on the relationship between psychoactive substance and behavioral addictions. We review data illustrating similarities and differences between impulse control disorders or behavioral addictions and substance addictions. This topic is particularly relevant to the optimal classification of these disorders in the forthcoming fifth edition of the American Psychiatric Association Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-V). Growing evidence suggests that behavioral addictions resemble substance addictions in many domains, including natural history, phenomenology, tolerance, comorbidity, overlapping genetic contribution, neurobiological mechanisms, and response to treatment, supporting the DSM-V Task Force proposed new category of Addiction and Related Disorders encompassing both substance use disorders and non-substance addictions. Current data suggest that this combined category may be appropriate for pathological gambling and a few other better studied behavioral addictions, e.g., Internet addiction. There is currently insufficient data to justify any classification of other proposed behavioral addictions. Proper categorization of behavioral addictions or impulse control disorders has substantial implications for the development of improved prevention and treatment strategies.
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                Author and article information

                Journal
                jba
                JBA
                Journal of Behavioral Addictions
                J Behav Addict
                Akadémiai Kiadó (Budapest )
                2062-5871
                2063-5303
                07 February 2018
                December 2018
                : 7
                : 4
                : 845-857
                Affiliations
                [ 1 ]Psychology Department, Nottingham Trent University , Nottingham, UK
                [ 2 ]Department of Clinical Psychology and Addiction, Institute of Psychology, ELTE Eötvös Loránd University , Budapest, Hungary
                [ 3 ]Department of Psychometrics and Statistics, Institute of Psychology, University of Gdańsk , Gdańsk, Poland
                Author notes
                [* ]Corresponding author: Dr. Mark Griffiths; Professor of Behavioural Addiction, International Gaming Research Unit, Psychology Department, Nottingham Trent University, 50 Shakespeare Street, Nottingham, NG1 4FQ, UK; Phone: +44 115 848 2401; E-mail: mark.griffiths@ 123456ntu.ac.uk
                Article
                10.1556/2006.7.2018.05
                6376361
                29409339
                © 2018 The Author(s)

                This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium for non-commercial purposes, provided the original author and source are credited, a link to the CC License is provided, and changes – if any – are indicated.

                Page count
                Figures: 0, Tables: 2, Equations: 0, References: 123, Pages: 13
                Funding
                Funding sources: ZD acknowledges the financial support of the Hungarian National Research, Development and Innovation Office (grant numbers: K111938 and KKP126835).
                Categories
                DEBATE

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