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behavioral changes

Understanding Addiction

addictions

The word addiction originates from a Latin term meaning enslaved to or bound by, which is a very apt way to describe it. Addiction’s influence on the brain is very powerful, which is why it is so challenging for you to overcome it. It hijacks the brain in three distinct ways:

  • A strong craving for a particular substance or activity
  • Loss of control of it
  • Continuing with it despite negative consequences

Experts in the field of addiction believed for many years that the only source of addictions were alcohol and drugs. Advanced diagnostic studies of the human brain and subsequent studies have proven otherwise, however. Pleasurable activities such as gambling, shopping, sex, and food can also take over your brain.

A Common Problem

Many people experiment with drugs or alcohol or find themselves engaged in an activity that they have become addicted to. Nearly 23 million Americans, approximately one out of every ten people, are addicted to alcohol, drugs, or some other harmful activity. The reasons are vast. Some of them are:

  • Curiosity
  • Relieve stress, anxiety, or depression
  • Pain management
  • Improve athletic performance
  • Fit in with others
  • To have a good time.

Engaging in these activities does not automatically lead to addiction, however. Everyone is different. The way to determine an addiction has less to do with what or how much you are participating in it and more to do with the consequences of it.

If the chosen activity is causing problems in your relationships, or at work, home or school, you probably have an addiction.

The Pleasure Center

Your brain reacts to all pleasures the same way. It doesn’t matter whether we are engaging in addictive behavior or not. Technically, pleasurable behavior causes your brain to release something called dopamine. It originates from a cluster of nerve cells located in the cerebral cortex portion of your brain. This connection is so consistent that doctors actually refer to this portion of the brain as the pleasure center.

The result of addiction is that your brain actually goes through physical changes of structure and function. It begins with recognizing pleasure and ends with compulsive behavior. It is a chronic disease not unlike other diseases such as heart disease or diabetes where the heart or pancreas is physically affected and changed.

The Addict’s Brain

Recent research has indicated that the changes to your brain are rather complicated. Every time you participate in addictive behavior and your brain’s pleasure center is flooded with dopamine, it causes a chain reaction. A portion of your brain associated with memory records the activity and creates a rapid sense of satisfaction while another area of your brain creates a conditioned response to it. Addiction stimulates this circuit of your brain and then overloads it.

When the pleasure associated with your addiction subsides, the memory centers in your brain remember it and cause you to want to recreate it. There are certain environmental cues that trigger those memories, at which time an intense craving develops.

Are You Addicted?

If you answer yes to any of the following questions, it is time to seek a professional evaluation:

  • Are you using or indulging in the activity more than before?
  • Do you go through withdrawal symptoms without it?
  • Have you ever lied to anyone about it?

 

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Understanding Addiction

addictions

Image is from www.lhrecovery.com

The word addiction originates from a Latin term meaning enslaved to or bound by, which is a very apt way to describe it. Addiction’s influence on the brain is very powerful, which is why it is so challenging for you to overcome it. It hijacks the brain in three distinct ways:

  • A strong craving for a particular substance or activity
  • Loss of control of it
  • Continuing with it despite negative consequences

Experts in the field of addiction believed for many years that the only source of addictions were alcohol and drugs. Advanced diagnostic studies of the human brain and subsequent studies have proven otherwise, however. Pleasurable activities such as gambling, shopping, sex, and food can also take over your brain.

A Common Problem

Many people experiment with drugs or alcohol or find themselves engaged in an activity that they have become addicted to. Nearly 23 million Americans, approximately one out of every ten people, are addicted to alcohol, drugs, or some other harmful activity. The reasons are vast. Some of them are:

  • Curiosity
  • Relieve stress, anxiety, or depression
  • Pain management
  • Improve athletic performance
  • Fit in with others
  • To have a good time.

Engaging in these activities does not automatically lead to addiction, however. Everyone is different. The way to determine an addiction has less to do with what or how much you are participating in it and more to do with the consequences of it.

If the chosen activity is causing problems in your relationships, or at work, home or school, you probably have an addiction.

The Pleasure Center

Your brain reacts to all pleasures the same way. It doesn’t matter whether we are engaging in addictive behavior or not. Technically, pleasurable behavior causes your brain to release something called dopamine. It originates from a cluster of nerve cells located in the cerebral cortex portion of your brain. This connection is so consistent that doctors actually refer to this portion of the brain as the pleasure center.

The result of addiction is that your brain actually goes through physical changes of structure and function. It begins with recognizing pleasure and ends with compulsive behavior. It is a chronic disease not unlike other diseases such as heart disease or diabetes where the heart or pancreas is physically affected and changed.

The Addict’s Brain

Recent research has indicated that the changes to your brain are rather complicated. Every time you participate in addictive behavior and your brain’s pleasure center is flooded with dopamine, it causes a chain reaction. A portion of your brain associated with memory records the activity and creates a rapid sense of satisfaction while another area of your brain creates a conditioned response to it. Addiction stimulates this circuit of your brain and then overloads it.

When the pleasure associated with your addiction subsides, the memory centers in your brain remember it and cause you to want to recreate it. There are certain environmental cues that trigger those memories, at which time an intense craving develops.

Are You Addicted?

If you answer yes to any of the following questions, it is time to seek a professional evaluation:

  • Are you using or indulging in the activity more than before?
  • Do you go through withdrawal symptoms without it?
  • Have you ever lied to anyone about it?

While it was difficult to get professional help for addiction in the past, today’s medical professionals now realize that your addiction is not the result of a character flaw or lack of willpower. The tools you need to overcome your addiction are readily available now.

Families in Canada order more medicines per person than any other area. The variety of medications marketed by companies is no doubt a contributing problem to recipe medicament abuse epidemic. Various remedies are used to treat Bladder inflammation. Certainly it isn’t all. Kamagra is a preparation prescribed to treat many upsets. What do you think about http://levitra-cost.com/levitra-20-mg.html? When you order medications like Kamagra you have to remember about levitra 20 mg. More info about Kamagra available at levitra 20mg. Generally, both men and women are afflicted by sexual dysfunctions. At times another disease can cause to impotence. Preparatory to purchasing Kamagra or other generic, speak to your pharmacist if you have any allergies. Talk to your health care professional any changes in libido you have experienced. Online pharmacy is a best way to find a doc in your area who treats this kind of dysfunction.

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Signs of drug addiction

5-SignsOfAddiction

Graph from www.12keysrehab.com

When a person is addicted to drugs, the last thing that they want is for certain friends and family members to know about it. Addicts look at anyone who is not doing drugs with them as someone who will judge them. They will also look at these people as a person who will try to make them stop, which they likely won’t want to. If you have a loved one who you think may be an addict, it is a good idea to know the signs of drug abuse. The sooner you know, the sooner you can help.

Physical Changes

When a person is addicted to drugs, they will exhibit a variety of physical symptoms. If you start to notice these symptoms, it is not uncommon for an addict to explain them away and create lies and reasons for these changes. There are some physical side effects that go along with certain drugs. Others can be exhibited regardless of what drug the addict is using. The changes to look for include:

  • Glazed or bloodshot eyes
  • Dilated or constricted pupils (this will only occur when the person is high)
  • Loss of appetite
  • A noticeable weight loss in a very short period of time.
  • Certain drugs will cause rashes and sores on the person’s face.
  • Bruises on the arms, mostly over the veins. These will appear if the person is using IV drugs.
  • Infections inside and around the mouth.
  • Burn marks on the lips from smoking out of a pipe.
  • Stuffy, red, chapped nostrils
  • Constant sniffing
  • Eyes rolling in the back of the head
  • Passing out while sitting down or standing up
  • The inability to walk in a straight line

Behavioral Changes

The more a person becomes dependent on the drugs, the more their behavior and habits will change. The drugs can change the way the brain focuses and forms coherent thoughts. Different drugs can affect people in different and dangerous ways. Regardless of the drug, the changes in an addict’s behavior are often the same. Some of the behavioral changes include:

  • Irritability even when there is nothing wrong
  • Becoming aggressive for no reason
  • Changes in personality and attitude
  • Loss of interest in things that they used to love doing
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • They start hanging around with new friends
  • The stop hanging around with old friends
  • Inability to hold a job
  • Financial problems
  • Being involved in criminal activity and their very first arrest
  • Staying up all night and sleeping all day
  • Excessive talking or talking really fast
  • Speaking nonsense
  • The inability to sit still
  • Seeing or hearing things that are not there (hallucinations)
  • Paranoia

What To Do if You Suspect That a Loved One is Addicted to Drugs

If you notice that a family member or loved one is exhibiting many of the symptoms listed above, chances are they have a drug problem. The sooner you confront them with your suspicions, the sooner you can try to help. It is not uncommon for an addict to lie and deny, however, the only way to save their life is to push them to get the help that they need.

If you are unable to get through to them, you may need to seek professional help. There are several agencies who have experience working with addicts, that can help you get through to your loved one. In some cases an intervention or even help from the police and the courts is necessary to get an addict to agree to get help with their addiction. If you can get an addict to agree to go to treatment, you are essentially saving their life.

 

Families in Canada order more medicines per person than any other area. The variety of medications marketed by companies is no doubt a contributing matter to prescription medicament abuse epidemic. Various remedies are used to treat Bladder priming. Certainly it isn’t all. Kamagra is a preparation prescribed to treat many upsets. What do you think about http://levitra-cost.com/levitra-20-mg.html? When you order medications like Kamagra you have to keep in mind about levitra 20 mg. More data about Kamagra available at levitra 20mg. Generally, both men and women are afflicted by sexual dysfunctions. At times another disease can cause to impotency. Preparatory to purchasing Kamagra or other generic, speak to your druggist if you have any allergies. Talk to your health care professional any changes in libido you have experimental. Online drugstore is a best way to find a physician in your area who treats this kind of dysfunction.

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