FREE EBOOK:
WHY CAN’T I STOP
The Neurobiology of Addiction

Dive into the complexity of  neurobiology and its impact of addiction.

Many people find addiction baffling. How is it that people suffering from this illness continue to addict, even when they know it is destroying their lives and harming everyone they touch? Addiction betrays our common-sense notion that if it hurts, you don’t do it.

The answer to the mystery of addiction lies in the neurobiology of addiction. Addiction develops as a dysregulation of our brain’s Drive-Reward system. What follows is a description of the neurobiological basis of addiction that will hopefully shed some light on this complex disease.

Learn more about The Two Pains of Addiction: Cravings and Withdrawal.

We think of addictivity as pain management gone awry. For some, addiction does start as an attempt to manage pain with pleasure. This is certainly true once the addiction has begun, as victims experience two new types of distress. The first pain is the pain of withdrawal once the drink, drug, or addictive behaviors are gone. The second pain it the pain of intense desire, which victims experience as intense cravings, mediated by the disordered interplay between the cerebral cortex and the brain’s drive-reward system. When in withdrawal or when craving, discomfort causes urges to addict to ease the distress caused by addicting. It is a neurodynamic vicious cycle.

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Additional Sections

  • Neuroanatomy of the Drive-Reward System
  • Impulsivity and Compulsivity
  • Reward and Addiction
  • Compulsivity and Addiction
  • Does Addiction Impact Your Life?
  • Neurobiology and Treatment

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