Addictive substances causes changes in the brain over time. Addicts will place the drug above anything else.
When one becomes addicted, their brain is practically redesigned to depend on the drugs even with their effects. Situations or circumstances that relate to former substance abuse can provoke craving years later, even though the physical symptoms have stopped. Nevertheless, breaking the addiction is not beyond your reach. But patients should understand that treatment is a continuous process. Dependence therapy is growing each day and has quickly bettered over the past years. Seek immediate assistance if you or anyone you know is having problems with an addiction.
How Addictions Happen
Every action we take - voluntary or involuntary - is controlled by the complex human brain. Feelings, decision-making, behaviour, basic motor skills, heart and breathing rates are all controlled by the brain. The limbic system sets chemicals free once a user takes an addictive drug in order to make the person feel pleasure. This boosts the desire to continue using the substance. Thanks to specific modifications that the brain's rewards system has experienced, a person will, despite dangerous consequences, feel a severe, involuntary craving to use a drug. Fulfilling the addiction becomes the first priority.
There is a section in the brain charged with addiction. This section of the brain is known as the limbic system. This part of the brain is the "brain reward system" and causes feelings of pleasure.
The brain reward system is called to action when a drug is used. Dependency might occur if a person often triggers this system with a substance. The brain reward system is usually sparked off when we engage in practices that are great for us. It is an important factor in our survival and adaptation. Anytime this system is activated, the brain concludes that an activity requiring survival is taking place. That action is then rewarded by the brain by releasing enjoyable emotions.
For example, when we get thirsty, we drink water, which stimulates the reward system so we continue to repeat this action. Addictive substances take over this system, bringing about emotions of pleasure, even for behaviour that is really risky. Addictive drugs, sadly, have more powerful effects on the brain reward system.
The Biochemistry Of Dependency
One of the greatest influencers of the reward system is dopamine. Dopamine is a natural element in the brain which releases signals to the reward system. When presented into the reward system, substances sometime ape dopamine or lead to an excessive production of it inside the brain.
Normal levels of dopamine are caused by normal actions (like food, music, sex, drinking, etc.) and don't reprogram the brain for addiction.
Regular activities produce dopamine that is 10% of what drugs produce.
Drugs utilize floods neuroreceptors with dopamine. The intoxicating effect of alcohol and drugs is caused by the combination. After prolonged substance ill-use, the human brain is not in a position to naturally create usual levels of dopamine. In reality, substances take the reward system hostage.
The effects are a deep desire to take the drug to normalize the dopamine amounts. Someone in such a situation cannot have feelings of pleasure without using the substance.
Neurofeedback And Addiction
Neurofeedback is gradually becoming one of the best cure for drug reliance. It is also known as Electroencephalogram (EEG) Biofeedback. To improve the performance of the brain, the brain is trained by using neurofeedback. A sensor is put on the scalp so that the therapist can track how the brain functions during the biofeedback. With this, the brain can improve its performance and make it better, the brain is then rewarded for doing that.
Underlying issues that may be leading to addiction are targeted by neurofeedback, like:
Neurofeedback records a successful trend as addiction treatment option, as it helps retrain the brain how to function without drugs. This is included in the program of some rehab centres. Contact us immediately on 0800 772 3971 to be linked with a treatment base that can support you well.