Are We All OCD Now, With Obsessive Hand-Washing And Technology Addiction?

One of the hallmarks of obsessive-compulsive disorder is contamination fears and excessive hand-washing. Years ago, a patient with severe OCD came to my office wearing gloves and a mask and refused to sit on any of the “contaminated” chairs. Now, these same behaviors are accepted and even encouraged to keep…Continue readingAre We All OCD Now, With Obsessive Hand-Washing And Technology Addiction?

Sugar Consumption Influences Reward Circuitry In The Brain

Sugar influences brain reward circuitry in ways similar to those observed when addictive drugs are consumed, researchers from Aarhus University have found. “There is no doubt that sugar has several physiological effects, and there are many reasons why it is not healthy. But I have been in doubt of the…Continue readingSugar Consumption Influences Reward Circuitry In The Brain

Brain’s Decision-making Area Has Been Spatiomolecularly Mapped

Scientists are one step closer to understanding how the part of our brain central for decision-making and the development of addiction is organized on a molecular level. Researchers at Karolinska Institutet, in mouse models and with methods used for mapping cell types and brain tissue, were able to visualize the…Continue readingBrain’s Decision-making Area Has Been Spatiomolecularly Mapped

Cultivating Joy Through Mindfulness: An Antidote To Opioid Misuse

A mind-body therapy, Mindfulness-Oriented Recovery Enhancement (MORE), increases the brain’s response to natural, healthy rewards while also decreasing the brain’s response to opioid related cues, a paper[1] from the University of Utah reports. “Previous research shows that prolonged use of opioids makes our brains more sensitive to pain and less…Continue readingCultivating Joy Through Mindfulness: An Antidote To Opioid Misuse

Heroin Reduces The Brain’s Ability To Form Synapses

Exposure to heroin sharply reduces levels of the protein necessary for developing and maintaining the brain’s synapses, a preclinical study[1] by University at Buffalo researchers has found. The development of addiction relapse is directly related to the impact that reductions in this protein, called drebrin, have on specific cells involved…Continue readingHeroin Reduces The Brain’s Ability To Form Synapses

The Opioid Epidemic You Haven’t Heard About

Ayao* is a tall and well-built 15-year-old, and like many his age, he is very particular about his appearance. He wears a white T-shirt with a colourful design on the front, white trousers and Kappa slip-on sandals. He likes to put a lot of effort into grooming his stylishly cut…Continue readingThe Opioid Epidemic You Haven’t Heard About

Nociceptin Neurons Become Active Before Loss Of Motivation

What happens when we give up? Inside the brain, a group of cells known as nociceptin neurons get very active before a mouse’s breakpoint. They emit nociceptin, a complex molecule that suppresses dopamine, a chemical largely associated with motivation. The findings offer new insight into the complex world of motivation…Continue readingNociceptin Neurons Become Active Before Loss Of Motivation