The Neurobiology of Addiction

This is the first installment of a five part series on the neurobiology of addiction by Jennifer Fernández, PhD. Follow along on Power Over Addiction or Facebook. Addiction is a biopsychosocial phenomenon that affects over 20 million people in the United States. The factors that cause addiction are not yet well understood, with some arguing Read more about The Neurobiology of Addiction[…]

Zap away cocaine addiction with lasers! or magnets!

Researchers at the National Institute of Health and UCSF claim to have stopped and started cocaine addiction in rats with the use of laser stimulation to the prefrontal cortex, the brain region where decision making and impulse control take place. “When we turn on a laser light in the prelimbic region of the prefrontal cortex, the Read more about Zap away cocaine addiction with lasers! or magnets![…]

Circumcision of the brain?

Physicians in China performed brain surgeries to treat opiate addiction by destroying the nucleus accumbens, the pleasure center of the brain. The procedure is called stereotactic ablation of the nucleus accumbens, which means brain tissue is burned away. Although the procedure was banned in 2004, surgeries continued in the name of research. The hope was Read more about Circumcision of the brain?[…]

The Truth About Addiction

Addiction is not a character flaw and it most definitely is not a choice. Addiction is a biopsychosocial phenomenon that results in negative consequences and feelings of shame and guilt. Biological, psychological, and social factors culminate into a dependent relationship to a substance or compulsive behavior as a means of coping with distressing emotional, psychological, Read more about The Truth About Addiction[…]