The development of addiction consists in gradual granting to a given behavior a growing importance as a source of gratification, while developing defense mechanisms to avoid confrontation with the harm it brings. In other words, an addicted person considers drinking, smoking, playing or playing for what gives him the most joy and does not want to admit that he has more and more problems because of that. So is addiction a disease?
A habit, a habit, an addiction
When we try to understand what addiction is, it is worth defining synonymous concepts.
We call habits highly automated (reflexive) behavior, often to a small extent conscious. In a situation in which we behave contrary to a habit, we often feel discomfort, a kind of dissatisfaction or lack of something. The habitual behavior is, for example, fastening seat belts, brushing teeth, sweetening drinks. We realize the habit only when there are obstacles to its implementation.
Addiction has nothing to do with willpower. According to the latest definition of American specialists, it is a permanent brain disease that requires proper treatment, regardless of whether it is addiction to alcohol, drugs or gambling – inform the AP.
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According to the classic definition, addiction is a strong need to do something or use some substance. They are also defined as risky, out of control, behavior.
Wikipedia reports that psychological addiction is manifested by the increase in drive associated with the search for an addictive drug, the decrease in tolerance to its effect (lowering the pleasure effect), weakness of the will, obsession of taking and obsessive thoughts, which recur after even many years of abstinence. Added to this is self-deception and physical extermination.
In the new definition of American specialists, it is emphasized that addiction is a brain disorder, which is better to visualize both families of addicts and family doctors why so often recurrences of this disease and treatment failures occur.
Explanation of the nature of addiction has become possible thanks to advances in brain research over the past two decades. First of all, you have to realize that it is a chronic disorder, occurring even after stopping treatment.
What is happening in the brains of addicts? Specialists generally define that the links between emotions, thinking and behavior are disrupted.
It is enough that the functioning of the frontal cortex will be disrupted because the emotional and cognitive sphere is interwoven there. This part of the brain matures at the latest, which explains why it is so dangerous to experiment with drugs during adolescence.
Some people are genetically more predisposed to falling into addictions. But people who do not have such tendencies become addicted. It’s enough that they often reach for drugs or experiment with gambling when they want to get rid of stresses that they cannot cope with.
In both cases, there is a disturbance in the reward system of the brain. This is when the neurotransmitter of the dopamine brain becomes more sensitive to certain pleasurable behaviors, such as drinking alcohol, smoking or taking drugs.