Brain activity neurons in the brainThe Butler Center for Research has published an update about the functionality of brain chemistry and why chronic substance abusers continue their destructive behavior even when there is clear evidence that it leads to a myriad of problems. Click here to read the full article.

Understanding the pathways of addiction

Through understanding the intricate system of neurons and how they transmit information in the brain, we can better understand the mind altering effects of drugs and alcohol. Neurons are responsible for transmitting information around our body. At the end of each neuron is a receptor which activates or deactivates a process in our body based on the neurotransmitter that it receives.

Dopamine in the brain

The most popular neurotransmitter, dopamine, is responsible for our feelings of pleasure. Drugs and alcohol cause an increased production of dopamine which leads to a heightened sense of pleasure, and a learned response connecting pleasure with the use of drugs and alcohol.

Effects on the brain

Prolonged drug use, affects dopamine levels which leads to impulsivity, and the inability to feel pleasure, which are significant in continuing the cycle of drug use. This deeper understanding assists in the treatment process through managing and regulating the body’s level of dopamine.

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