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Community Action Organization: Awareness, Resources & Support
1. the quality or state of being addicted
2. compulsive need for and use of a habit-forming substance (as heroin, nicotine, or alcohol) characterized by tolerance and by well-defined physiological symptoms upon withdrawal;
We know addiction as “the dark passenger” -- a part of a person that takes over all logical thinking after the use of substances that are pleasurable to certain areas of the brain. We have learned that the pleasure experienced by these substances cannot be found naturally. We have learned also that once addicted the brain craves these pleasures and therefore the function that would be concerned about consequences no longer plays a part in making choices.
Nearly all drugs target the brain’s reward system by flooding the brain with dopamine. This controls movement, emotion, motivation and feelings of pleasure. The over stimulation of this system which normally responds to natural behaviors that are linked to survival produces euphoric effects in response to the drugs. Current research on drug addiction indicates changes in areas of the brain that are critical to judgment, decision-making, learning and memory.
Ten of the Most Dangerous Drug