Karin Helmersson Bergmark

In this presentation I discuss the development of the addiction concept, a development that entails a marked expansion of what can constitute an addiction. During the last decade, following the introduction of DSM-5 (the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, APA 2013) and the opening-up of new terrains, many bad habits and behavioral problems are in the process of being transferred to and renamed as addictions, encompassing a continued or rather reinforced medicalization of social problems.Building on, or rather copied from, indicators of substance use problems in the diagnostic manuals, the development and use of the concept has mainly taken place within a medical science tradition. I suggest a social science perspective i.e. a recycling of concepts such as institutionalization and habituation, aiming at a broadening understanding of problems denoted as behavior addictions​.