Quite several factors contribute to addiction, examples are genetic factors, environmental or peer influence, personal behavioral patterns, etc. Nevertheless, professional that deal with addicted patients have come to a conclusion that there are four stages of addiction which every addict goes through.
Stage 1: EXPERIMENTATION
This is the basics and foundation of addiction even though it does not end up as addiction in everyone who goes through it.
Experimentations are very rampant in young people as they like to try out new things despite knowing the effect. Meanwhile, experimentation is not always harmless, it can be a path to a lifelong addiction that is difficult to break out from.
Stage 2: REGULAR INDULGING
Some people would stop at experimenting, but this stage involves continual use or indulging in that particular act or drug.
At this phase, the victim involved might start to feel ashamed or guilty for his actions but would continue regardless, making excuses for himself. This phase also comes with withdrawal, change in behavior, and most likely the early physical symptoms of whatever addiction is involved.
Stage 3: ABUSE
At this stage. the user begins to prioritize the substance over other aspects of his life, being so engrossed in the addictions. The transition from stage 2 to 3 is hardly detected as it happens too fast and almost unnoticeable. At this stage, the user damns every consequence and does not even think or care about the repercussion of his actions.
Stage 4: ADDICTION AND SUBSTANCE DEPENDENCE.
This is the final and last stage of addiction, and one of the characteristics is that it affects the physical and mental health of the user.
Other characteristics are; poor performance at work, loss of concentration, jeopardized personal relationships, etc. at stage four, the user has reached a point that he never thought or imagined he would reach when he was still experimenting at stage one.