Psychologist practitioner applies psychological assessment and treatment of behavior problems.
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Shopping is our liberation and freedom! Shopping is the "look of love", but other issues concerning shopping is also worth considering a reflection. Women with an external attractive appearance have to take care of inner struggle and impulses from within. This is the only proven guarantee to keep one`s beauty and self-confidence. An inability to resist impulses to buy beautiful things, clothes, shoes etc. can sometime be leading to severe personal, economic or social consequences. Pathological compulsive shopping is called "Oniomania" or "Shopaholic" and affects 5-10% of adults, women more often than men. Oniomania typically occurs in cycles. Depression, boredom or emotional distress may set off an impulse to shop and as with all addictions, shopping tends to meet a need that is missing elsewhere in peoples life.
Compulsive shopping usually begins in adolescence and could be influenced by commersial shopping and beauty model industry. This behavior usually progresses from occasional shopping to a more habitual shopping. The urge to shop becomes so great that the tension can only be relieved by more shopping. A desire for special expensive fashion brands increase that personal economic risks become involved, as well as neglect of other interests, sexuality, family and work. Severe family relations problems, financial problems, and sometime missconductive and criminal behavior as shoplifting to support the shopping habit may result. Shoplifting (also known as retail theft) is theft of merchandise for sale in a shop, store, or other retail establishment, by an ostensible patron. It is one of the most common crimes for police and courts. A common slang term for shoplifting in Australia, Britain, and the United States is "five-finger discount". In the U.S., it is often referred to as "jacking" or "racking" and in the UK as "nicking". (Professional shoplifters or organized shoplifting groups are often referred to as "boosters.")
Shoplifting is not an unusual behaviour. Famous actress Winona Ryder was born Winona Horowitz and named after the town in which she was born, Winona Minnesota. Ryder received a star on the Walk of Fame in Hollywood, California, in October 2000, and was voted Best-Dressed Celebrity of the Week by Entertainment Weekly for the event. Ryder helped Italian designer Giorgio Armani promote his Manhattan chain of stores.  On December 12, 2001, Winona Ryder was arrested for shoplifting thousands of dollars' worth of designer clothes and accessories at Saks Fifth Avenue department store in Beverly Hills, California. Ryder was convicted of grand theft and vandalism, but the jury acquitted her on the third felony charge (burglary). In December 2002, she was sentenced to three years' probation, 480 hours of community service, $3,700 in fines, and $6,355 in restitution to Saks -- and the judge ordered the actress to attend psychological and drug counselling. The charges were eventually reviewed, and the felonies reduced to misdemeanors, on June 18, 2004. Ryder is well known among teens for roles that capture modern teen angst in movies such as 'The Age of Innocence','Heathers' and 'Girl, Interrupted'. The cause for this theft behaviour and more common compulsive shopping behaviour’s can be found. One risk factor may be compensation to feelings of low self-esteem, emptyness, loneliness and depression. Prevention of the urge to develop addictive behavior is challenging and may not always be possible. Psychologist counseling may benefit people who are prone to compulsive shopping or other addictive behavior. People who are aware that compulsive shopping affects close relatives might be at higher risk and should be especially careful.
Symptoms are: occasional shopping becomes habitual, loss of control over time spent shopping, shopping continues until all money is lost, shopping until large credit card debts are accumulated, lack of concern for society’s expectations and laws. Lies and unfaithful behavior may occur to support the habit and pay debts. A psychological evaluation and history reveals compulsive shopping behavior. Treatment for the person with compulsive shopping begins with the recognition of the problem. It is often associated with quilt and denial, allowing the person to believe there is no need for treatment.
Most people affected by compulsive shopping enter treatment under pressure from others, rather than a voluntary acceptance of the need for treatment. Treatment options include individual therapy and counseling sessions. This is probably the most effective treatment. Abstinence principles that apply to other types of addiction, such as substance abuse and alcohol dependence, are also relevant in the treatment of compulsive shopping behavior. Medications such as antidepressants can be shown beneficial in combination with psychotherapy.
Many people are able to gain control over their lives after undergoing treatment for compulsive shopping. If not detected and treated early, women's compulsive shopping behavior might lead to estrangement from family and friends as well as financial and legal difficulties. Compulsive shopping is rarely a chronic condition, but relapse after treatment is a real risk.
Call Eliazon if symptoms of compulsive shopping are present.