Drugs & the Brain

Mason McDaniel & Katie McIntyre

How drugs that affect the brain work

-The information processing in the brain takes place at the connections between neurons.

-Some drugs can change the way neurons communicate with each other.

-The action of certain neurotransmitters is the basis for our different moods and emotions.

The Path to Addiction

*Drug Use - Getting pleasure is one reason why people repeatedly abuse drugs.

*Tolerance - Drug tolerance develops after repeated drug use when the user finds that it takes more of a drug to feel the same effect felt when first using the drug.

*Dependence - After repeated drug use, a person finds that he or she cannot function properly without taking the drug.

*Addiction - While drugs are changing the abuser's brain,he or she is also learning drug abuse behaviors and attitudes. An addict learns hot to get drugs, how to take them, and,sometimes, how to lie and steal to get drugs.

Behavioral Warning Signs of Addiction

1. Loss of interest in schoolwork

2. Dramatic change of appearance

3. Change of friends

4. Unexplained mood swings

5. Absences from school

6. Dramatic change in eating habits

7. Excessive secretiveness or lying

8. Unexplained need for money

Explanation of Withdrawal

The uncomfortable physical and psychological symptoms produced when a physically dependent drug user stops using drugs is called withdrawal. Withdrawal is characterized mostly by symptoms that are opposite of the drug's effect. Withdrawal keeps addiction going because the distressing symptoms drive the addict to take more drug to alleviate the symptoms.

Ways to Treat Addiction

Many people believe that when a person becomes addicted, he or she will use drugs for the rest of his or her life. Most communities offer a variety of treatment programs. There is one foolproof way to avoid addiction --- don't use drugs of abuse.

Ultimate Treatment Facility