According to this book, shoppers can join the long list of addicts - gymaholics, dot.comaholics, sexaholicsinitially identified by a section of the media apparently addicted to identifying addictions.
The case for shopping addiction rather crumbles when the evidence is examined. The definitions of addiction used by the various authors are rarely explicitly defined but seem to be so broad as to stretch from “dysphoric repetitive shopping” at one end to the DSM–IV style “dependent shopper” at the other. The research base for a putative new disorder should be robust. The evidence presented here is based largely on results from questionnaires of unclear validity and reliability with low response rates from self selected samples. There is one piece of good qualitative research and ample case studies, but, though insightful, they aren't exactly sound epidemiology.
It is disappointing to read the claim in this book that shopping addiction can only be treated