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Motivation and the Brain Paper

Motivation and the Brain Paper Neuroscience and psychology seem to have been working together to try to understand how and why certain behaviors transpire in a person’s personality, and what makes or motivates a person to do the things they do. One of the most analyzed wonders that mark motivation, the thought developments, and the social interaction, is the analysis of drug obsession.

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Through advance forms of scanning the brain with imaging equipment like positron emission tomography (PET) and functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) have advanced the knowledge of drug addiction and how the brain is affected (Volkow, Fowler, & Wang, 2003,para 2). This paper will examine the brain structures and functions, the influence of extrinsic and intrinsic factors to abstain from drug use and the heredity and environmental factors on the motivation used to refrain from drug use. The brain is the control station of the body. It is in control of everything you do, it even is hard at work while you sleep.

Just like any other control or command center, the many parts that make up the brain must work together as a team. When drugs come into the brain, they interrupt the work and change how the brain then performs its job. These alterations can lead to compulsive drug use. Physical changes within the brain are linked to chronic substance abuse having a major impact on the brains functioning and emotional disarrays. Drugs are chemicals, which access the brains communication system and interfere with the method nerve cells send, receive and process information. Some drugs can change the brain in ways that last long after the person has stopped taking drugs, maybe even permanently. This is more likely when a drug is taken repeatedly” (NIDA, 2011,para 6). Some drugs can copycat a natural neurotransmitter sending abnormal messages through the brain. They can also causes nerve cells to discharge excessive amounts which can eventually cause confusion on the communication channels. Drugs can disturb the brain’s “reward” circuit responds to pleasurable experiences by releasing dopamine and tells the brain it is rather important so remember this.

You could say they hijack the system which in turn causes unusually large amounts of dopamine to overflow the system. This is what causes that “high” or euphoria that is linked with drug abuse. Studies have shown that drug abuse can cause a reduction in the total dopamine production. This is more noticeable through periods of withdrawal and most prominent during complete detoxification. Frontal areas of the brain, mainly the orbitofrontal cortex and cingulate gyrus, are most affected by these decreases, producing a dysfunction in brain activity in these areas. Volkow, Fowler, & Wang, 2003,para 6) What starts out being a voluntary act at the beginning with continuous drug use the brain is altered and the person loses considerable control over his behavior and becomes completely uncontrollable. Extrinsic motivation is usually required in order to get the person to quit their addiction (Leshner, 2007). Sometimes intervention from loved ones are good external motivator to get the addict to seek treatment. Other motivators could consist of current development in the addict’s life such as loss of their job, loss of a relationship, financial complications, and physical deterioration (Westreich, 2007).

Intrinsic motivators are usually related to a greater success rate of long – term absinence for the addict in recovery. Advancement and inspiration of personal obligations can be an effective internal motivator (DiClemente, Bellino, & Neavins, 1999). It is amazing to mention that “patients with more severe alcohol problems generally had greater internal motivation for treatment. The severity of the patient’s alcohol problems enhances internal motivation, presumably because the problem severity increases distress and thus influences decisionmaking [SIC]” (DiClemente, Bellino, & Neavins, 1999).

Every addiction originates for varies reasons, no single gene has been found to be related to addiction itself. It takes several different genes in combination to contribute to addiction. However, these genes only make that person susceptible does not mean you can not overcome the addiction. If there is a family history of drug abuse might mean it may be a little harder but with the right treatment the addict is able to overcome his addiction (Drug Addiction Help, n. d). Environment plays a crucial element in the addicts recovery.

An addict that has started his recovery is more likely to experience a setback early due to reintroduction to the an environment that includes friends and other people who are continueing to use or deal drugs. Environmental cues which happened during times of drug use developed with the drug use itself, and become hard for the addict to tell apart. In the course of recovery, the addict will still associate these cues through classical conditioning with the use of drugs and thus produce the eagerness of a drug experience created by past experience. This can create cravings for the drug experience.

Cue – induced cravings is the environmental reason that most frequently causes a setback (Leshner, 2007). In conclusion, there are physical changes in the brain with chronic drug abuse causing changes in the frontal area of the brain . Extrinsic motivation is usually required in order to get the person to quit their addiction (Leshner, 2007). Advancement and inspiration of personal obligations can be an effective internal motivator (DiClemente, Bellino, & Neavins, 1999). We discovered that no single gene is related to drug addiction in itself. And finally, that environment plays a crucial part in the addicts recovery. References

DiClemente, C. C. , Bellino, L. E. , & Neavins, T. M. (1999). Motivation for change and alcholism treatment. Alcohol Research & Health, 23(2). Drug Addiction Help. (n. d). Hereditary Factors in Addiction. Retrieved from Drug Treatment Information & Resources: http://www. drug-addiction-help. org/addiction-information/hereditary-factors-in-addiction/ Leshner, A. I. (2007). Addiction is a brain disease. Retrieved from University of Texas at Dallas: http://www. issues. org/17. 3/leshner. htm NIDA (2011). Brain and Addiction. Retrieved from NIDA for teens: The science behind drug abuse: http://teens. drugabuse. gov/facts/facts_brain1. hp Volkow, N. D. , Fowler, J. S. , & Wang, G. -J. (2003). The addicted human brain: insights from imaging studies. Retrieved from The Journal of Clinical Investigation: http://www. jci. org/articles/view/18533 Westreich, L. M. (2007). Helping the addict you love: the new effective program for getting the addict into treatment. Retrieved from A Fireside Book: http://books. google. com/books? id=GfTS28_d_u0C&pg=PA86&1pg=PA86&dq=Reasons+addicts+seek+treatment&source=web&ots=EPJ-t7wLhc&sig=42PCeX01AwCYvspv_t9u7Cj9VoE&hl=en&sa=X&oi=book_result&resnum=10&ctresult#v=onepage&q=Reasons%20addicts%20seek%20treatment&f=fals

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