Alcohol and drugs rewire your brain by changing how your genes work research is investigating how to counteract addictions effects

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Wednesday, April 6th, 2022 In Sober living By Cem A. Arel

Drug misuseis when you use legal or illegal substances in ways you shouldn’t. You might take more than the regular dose of pills or use someone else’s prescription. But usually, you’re able to change your unhealthy habits or stop using altogether. One of the brain areas still maturing during adolescence is the prefrontal cortex—the part of the brain that allows people to assess situations, make sound decisions, and keep emotions and desires under control. The fact that this critical part of a teen’s brain is still a work in progress puts them at increased risk for trying drugs or continuing to take them.

is drug addiction a disease

They can be responsible for about half of a person’s risk of developing a substance use disorder. The notion of addiction as a brain disease is commonly criticized with the argument that a specific pathognomonic brain lesion has not been identified. Indeed, brain imaging findings in addiction (perhaps with the exception of extensive neurotoxic gray matter loss in advanced alcohol addiction) are nowhere near the level of specificity and sensitivity required of clinical diagnostic tests. However, this criticism neglects the fact that neuroimaging is not used to diagnose many neurologic and psychiatric disorders, including epilepsy, ALS, migraine, Huntington’s disease, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia.

Clinical trials

Rezai thought to use a similar implant in the part of the brain responsible for behavioral regulation, anxiety and cravings as a way to target addiction. SUDs and other mental health conditions are caused by overlapping factors such as genetic vulnerabilities, issues with similar areas of your brain and environmental influences. what is drug addiction About half of people who experience a mental health condition will also experience a substance use disorder and vice versa. In 2020, 17 million U.S. adults had a co-occurring mental health disorder and SUD. People may have strong desires or urges to use the substance even if there are harmful or dangerous consequences.

The care of a medical provider — whether it be intensive care or the occasional checkup — is needed throughout the lifelong process of treating addiction. Exactly how these drugs cause changes in gene regulation is unknown. However, a direct link between alcohol consumption and changes in gene expression in mice provides a clue. A byproduct of alcohol being broken down in the liver called acetate can cross the blood-brain barrier and unwind DNA from histones in mouse memory circuits. Debates about whether addiction is a disease often turn on what people think a disease is. I think of it definitely as a disease or, if you prefer, you can use the word disorder.

Brain study unlocks secrets of strong drug memories

A history of trauma in your life also makes you more likely to have addiction. You can also get addicted to prescription or illegally obtained narcotic pain medications, or opioids. In 2018, opioids played a role in two-thirds of all drug overdose deaths. Provides scientific information about the disease of drug addiction, including the many harmful consequences of drug… Both disrupt the normal, healthy functioning of an organ in the body, both have serious harmful effects, and both are, in many cases, preventable and treatable.

Epidemiological data are cited in support of the notion that large proportions of individuals achieve remission [27], frequently without any formal treatment [28, 29] and in some cases resuming low risk substance use [30]. These spontaneous remission rates are argued to invalidate the concept of a chronic, relapsing disease [4]. With treatment, many people manage addiction and live full, healthy lives. But recovering from substance use disorders and behavioral addictions isn’t easy.