(314) 644-3339
7750 Clayton Road
St. Louis, MO, 63117

(314) 644-3339


Substance and Behavioral Addictions

Substance and Behavioral Addictions


Addictions to certain substances or activities can be a chronic, often relapsing brain disease which may cause compulsive substance seeking and use (e.g. alcohol, drugs, nicotine, food) or compulsive activity (e.g. gambling, sexting, sex, porno, internet, shopping, eating) despite harmful consequences to the person who is addicted and those around them. Addiction to these substances or activities can become a brain disease if the abuse leads to changes the brain.

Although it is true that for most people the initial decision to take drugs or to engage in certain behaviors is voluntary, over time there can be changes in the brain caused by repeated drug abuse or possibly repeated behavioral activity which can affect a person’s self control and ability to make sound decisions, and at the same time send impulses to engage in an addictive response. This can change the way one thinks, feels and behaves, and can be daunting.

There is a cycle to addiction that is important to understand:



I see you in individual therapy and this may be combined with couple and family sessions as needed.

Help with coping with cravings, avoiding the substance or activity, and dealing with possible relapses are key to effective treatment of your addiction. If your family can become involved there is a better probability of positive outcomes.

By learning the “signs and stages of addiction development”, you, as well as your friends and family will have a better idea of how the treatment will benefit you, but the treatment will vary greatly among the different stages of addiction.

In my work with individuals, couples and families suffering from addictions, I can help address the following issues as you move forward to achieve a successful recovery:

  • Identifying addictive behaviors and cycles
  • Understanding the psychological and psychological components of addiction
  • Repairing relationships affected by addiction
  • Creating new and healthy patterns supporting recovery
  • Assessing and creating a comprehensive treatment plan unique to you
  • Identifying and treating co-occurring anxiety or depression

Seeing a therapist does not mean that you are weak and do not have the potential to handle your problems. Therapy is for people who are smart enough to realize they need help. I can give you tools and support for re-framing your thoughts that will last a lifetime. Click on the Tests page to see

I believe that behind each person’s brokenness lies a dignity that makes positive growth possible. I also believe a process of true healing can happen as we work as a team to solve your problems.

I understand the pain and struggle of addiction.

Call me at 314-644-3339 to make the necessary changes from the inside out to take control of your addiction.

Learn More :
Alcohol and Drug Addiction
Sexting Addiction

Disclaimer: The entire contents of this website are based upon the opinions of Peggy Levinson, unless otherwise noted. Individual articles are based upon the opinions of the respective author, who retains copyright as marked. The information on this website is not intended to replace a one-on-one relationship with a qualified health care professional and is not intended as medical advice. It is intended as a sharing of knowledge and information based on the experience of Peggy Levinson and her community. Peggy Levinson encourages you to make your own health care decisions based upon your research and in partnership with a qualified health care professional.