Your Brain is Wired for Addiction

 

The predilection for addiction is in our genetic make-up.

We can deny all we want, but every human being has the hard-wiring to become addicted to something . . . or multiple somethings.

Vices—everybody has at least one

Maybe you’ve never reached the level of having to pawn off household goods or jewelry in order to pay for your next fix, so you think you’re not an addict. Do you drink coffee or tea? Do you smoke tobacco cigarettes or indulge in chew or dip? What happens if you run out or get too busy to for a ten minute ‘smoke break’? Headache. Anxiousness, irritability, and jitters. Guess what, these are withdrawal symptoms of physical addiction.  And our brains are wired for addiction. We need it. While prescription and illegal drugs, alcohol, caffeine, and tobacco are the front and center culprits of addiction, there are other lesser known areas which are now being given more credit as being addiction inducing. Compulsive gambling. Eating. Sex. Internet/Cellphone/Technology.

Hardwired for addiction

Archeologists have proven—thanks to the Alulu Tablet—that as far back as 2050 BC the ancient Sumerians not only brewed beer, but marketed it, too. The markings on the Tablet include a measure of quality, demonstrating the importance of the product to the people. As beer cannot be made quickly, this directly connects to a shift in history, when man went from nomad/gatherers to farmer/settlers, and eventually civilizations were born. Following the appearance of beer came opium, approximately 6,000 years ago. Tea caffeine has been dated back at least 5,000 years. Coffee was ‘discovered’ roughly 700 years ago, but has wasted no time in taking over the world.

Big Business Takes No Prisoners

With scientific research plenty of headway into understanding how addiction works has been made. Unfortunately, this means that the problem is much easier to take advantage of, and when there’s more money in encouraging addiction rather than curing it, which route do you thing corporate America wants to follow? Snack-food makers want to boost profits. Fortunate for them, the more of their stuff you eat, the more the urges for the junk food increase . . . because it’s addicting. That’s not an accident. Oh, and while you keep craving more, your hunger never really gets satisfied. Thanks to that perfect chemical concoction which gets your brain to release dopamine, serotonin, and endorphins similar to the way narcotics do, but doesn’t trigger that pesky ‘stop eating, you’re full’ reminder. Aren’t empty calories great?

Addiction is profitable . . .  and exploitable

A society of citizens who will work, hand their paychecks over as an almighty consumer, and avoid wreaking physical havoc in the streets or on each other is just want any organized government wants. “Addicts” are a good thing . . . so long as they behave themselves and remain stable. Once they become non-complacent, however, they’re considered derelicts, or troublemakers. Especially when becoming angry or demanding change. In a compromise, the “system” does want to pacify its citizens, to a point. It needs impoverished customer service workers who are okay with the state of their lives. How do you pacify? Feed addictions, because most addicts are okay with anything in their life (jobs, relationships, societal limitations) as long as they’re getting their fix.

Hello, My Name is . . . Dr. Self-Medicate

Addiction is either considered harmless or, as is more often the case, the result of uncontrollable urges. Many see addiction as a moral failing on the part of the addict, and it’s in these cases that those struggling with some form of addiction rely on self-medicating rather than reaching out and asking for help. Self-medicating doesn’t always come in pill form. Cutting, eating, drinking, and self-punishing with exercise are just a few of the ways a person may try and escape. The bottom line is that addiction is real. What’s more, addiction is a disease. Not a choice. Not a failure. Something that can be cured. If you or a loved one suffer with an addiction, reach out to Banyan Treatment Center to speak with one of our addiction specialists today.

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