What Happens to Your Brain When You Use Drugs?

Neural Network

The brain is series of 100,000,000,000 neurons, all connected and streamlined to communicate with each other

The human brain is complex. This three-pound organ computes when to breathe, what to think, what emotion to display, how to react to pain, and a billion other mini-and-not-so-mini reactions. The brain executes 4 functions:

  • Regulates your body’s basic systems
  • Interprets and responds to your environment
  • Assembles your thoughts
  • Builds your emotions
  • Controls your behaviour

The brain is series of 100,000,000,000 neurons, all connected and streamlined to communicate with each other. Drugs, and their chemicals, affect the brain by interfering with this communication superhighway. They alter the way that neurons (e.g.. cars) send, receive, transmit, and process.

Most drugs target your brain’s system by flooding it with dopamine, a neurotransmitter that controls emotion, motivation, movement, and pleasure.

Just like a dog getting rewarded with treats, an overstimulated brain becomes euphoric, then demands more. And more.

Marijuana & Heroin

Marijuana and heroin’s active chemicals work to activate more neurons on your brain’s superhighway. These new neurons are very similar to your naturally occurring ones, but they often twist the message their meant to send.

Amphetamine & Cocaine

Amphetamine and cocaine work in two different ways. The first is to overload your neural networks with neurotransmitters. They also prevent the replenishing of your brain’s basic chemicals. This results in over-amplified messages being sent to your neurons, which, inherently, are the cause of your brain’s miscommunication.

If drugs are just natural chemicals, why are they so effective?

Some drugs actually pump you with 2 to 10 times more dopamine than a natural high, like eating or sex. In most cases, this high is instant and can last much longer.

How do drugs affect me over time?

We’re wired for pleasure. Let’s imagine someone is whispering in your ear. Now, they’re shouting. And they keep shouting. And its painful. And they keep shouting. Eventually, like at a loud concert, your ears begin to adjust themselves. When the shouting dies down, you’re left with ears that don’t hear so well.

Just as your body adjusts its hearing abilities in the scenario outlined above, your body will begin to become more and more familiar with the drugs you feed it. It will come to depend on them. Over time, not even the strongest high will move the needle – you’ll be intolerant and feel flat, lifeless, and depressed.

If you feel this way or are beginning to feel this way as a result of a drug or alcohol addiction, we’d love to help you. Contact Ledgehill Today and George will give you a call back.