Compulsive Buying—Features and Characteristics of Addiction

Aviv Weinstein, Aniko Maraz, Mark D. Griffiths, Michel Lejoyeux, Zsolt Demetrovics

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterpeer-review

46 Scopus citations


Compulsive buying is chronic, repetitive purchasing that becomes a primary response to negative events and feelings. It is associated with craving and withdrawal and it is characterized by euphoria and/or relief from negative emotions. The prevalence rates of compulsive buying vary between 1% and 8% worldwide. Most studies report higher prevalence rates in females than males. Compulsive buying can result in substantial debts, legal problems, personal distress, and marital conflict. Empirical research demonstrates that compulsive buying has psychiatric comorbidity with depression, impulse control disorders, eating disorders, alcohol dependence, nicotine dependence, and anxiety. Psychobiological, pharmacological, and physiological studies on compulsive buying are needed since most studies are based on self-report methods (surveys, interviews, etc.). Few controlled studies have assessed the effects of pharmacological treatment on compulsive buying and there is no evidence that pharmacological treatment of compulsive buying is effective.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationNeuropathology of Drug Addictions and Substance Misuse Volume 3
Subtitle of host publicationGeneral Processes and Mechanisms, Prescription Medications, Caffeine and Areca, Polydrug Misuse, Emerging Addictions and Non-Drug Addictions
Number of pages15
ISBN (Electronic)9780128006771
ISBN (Print)9780128006344
StatePublished - 1 Jan 2016


  • Behavioral addiction
  • Compulsive buying
  • Hoarding
  • Sensation seeking


Dive into the research topics of 'Compulsive Buying—Features and Characteristics of Addiction'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this