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Cryptocurrency addiction on the rise

cryptocurrency addiction


Cryptocurrency is one of several behavioural addictions that has seen a sharp rise in recent years, and even more so since the outbreak of the Coronavirus pandemic. With the lure of stocks and the guesswork of gambling, trading cryptocurrency has been known to make many people large amounts of money. However, obsession with crypto-trading can lead to addiction and – like gambling – disastrous financial consequences.


What is cryptocurrency?

Cryptocurrency is a collection of data designed to work as “digital money” to be used over the internet. This type of digital system doesn’t need to rely on banks in order to verify transactions. Instead of physical money, what you have is a peer-to-peer system that allows anyone anywhere to send and receive payments in the form of digital entries.


Cryptocurrency addiction

Substance abuse and reckless behaviours often begin as an escape from reality, grief or trauma. However, once you cross the line from abuse to addiction, it’s difficult to go back without professional help.

The possibility of big financial gains makes crypto trading especially appealing to many. It provides traders with endless options when it comes to altcoins and tokens, with people desperately trying to decide which new coin could become the next big thing and invest immediately.

One of the biggest problems with crypto however, is the lack of regulation. The market never sleeps, and people often find themselves obsessively staring at their screens for hours on end and making dozens of transactions a day. The more profit made, the bigger the dopamine hit. Gradually the stakes get higher the more losses they make until traders find themselves depositing more and more cash, desperate to gain back what they’ve lost.

cryptocurrency addiction


Why is cryptocurrency addiction on the rise?

The number of people now being treated for cryptocurrency addiction is on the rise, a new twist on the old problem of gambling addiction.

The pandemic has seen more people working from home than ever before. Many were furloughed and sat at home bored, lonely and in need of stimulation, turning to cryptocurrency trading in order to pass the time. Soon they found it was an exciting escape from their reality.

The constant availability and access to cryptocurrency trading through smartphones and computers means that those addicted to it never have to “switch off”. Often individuals find themselves constantly thinking about cryptocurrency or staying up all night to track the cost of coins and tokens. The high risk/high reward nature and unpredictability of the cryptocurrency market is what appeals most to the people who engage in risky behaviours such as gambling or substance abuse.

However, another issue that can arise is the crossover into other addictions, such as drugs and alcohol, as thrill-seeking usually leads to more thrill-seeking. Others turn to substances in order to cope with the anxiety of trading, as well as financial loss.

cryptocurrency addiction


Signs of cryptocurrency addiction

Cryptocurrency is a behavioural addiction. However, you may notice physical, as well as psychological, signs as a result. These include, but are not limited to:

– Looking tired due to lack of sleep

– Neglecting physical appearance

– Prioritising crypto trading over other things like jobs and family

– Debts and other financial problems as a result of trading losses

– Lying to friends and family about how you spend your time online

– Unpredictable moods, going from excitement and relief to feelings of despair and depression

– Sweating and tremors as a result of anxiety


Treatment for cryptocurrency addiction

Behavioural addictions such as this require extensive psychological therapy. The most effective form of treatment is thought to be abstinence-based programmes which takes place in a residential setting. Through the use of CBT (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy), group therapy and individual therapy, counsellors aim to uncover the underlying causes of the addictive behaviour. During their programme, patients will be taught to replace these problematic behaviours with healthy coping mechanisms in order to overcome their addiction.

If you need more advice, help or support, do not hesitate to contact Which Rehab today on 0800 170 7000. Our experienced counsellors on are hand to help every step of the way.