Tag Archives: Behavior

Dopamine and Norepinephrine Contributing to Addiction?

Dopamine and Norepinephrine and Their Contribution to Addiction

Dopamine and norepinephrine are very crucial neurotransmitters whose functions can never be underestimated. These are some of the most crucial neurotransmitters in the body. In particular, dopamine has very many functions in the body but to many people it is famous for its good feeling effects that it is always identified with but this should not be the case as it has functions beyond the mesolimbic pathway. In the brain dopamine plays such roles as: It plays a big role in starting movement, and the destruction of dopamine neurons in an area of the brain called the substantia nigra is what produces the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. Dopamine is involved in the frontal cortex in executive functions like attention and feelings among others. In the rest of the body, dopamine is involved in nausea, in kidney function, and in heart function. Though only relevant to most people when it comes to such aspects as motivation, addiction, attention or lust, dopamine is a crucial neurotransmitter that also does vital functions in different pathways. Therefore dopamine should not only be limited to the mesolimbic pathway. A pathway which starts with cells in the ventral tegmental area, buried deep in the middle of the brain, which send their projections out to places like the nucleus accumbens and the cortex.  the levels of dopamine is naturally controlled by the brain, for example when a person engages  in pleasurable activities the brain will increase the level of dopamine in the nucleus accumbens, however during addiction the dopamine signaling in this area is changed. For any drug to have any pleasurable feeling to the user then the level of dopamine must be increased and this is what causes euphoric feelings that drug users will do anything to achieve.


Dopamine depletion and cocaine addiction

Despite one of the most dangerous drugs of pleasure, cocaine has remained to be one of the drugs that are highly abused worldwide. Cocaine works in such a way that it targets the dopamine which is a neurotransmitter related with euphoric feelings. When taken cocaine will cause a surge of dopamine extracellular in limbic areas, specifically, nucleus accumbens it is this surge that causes euphoric effects cocaine is known for. It is the euphoric properties of cocaine that lead to the development of chronic abuse, and appear to involve the acute activation of central dopamine neuronal systems. Dopamine plays a key role in reward system and stimulation behavior. However, when a person uses cocaine for a long time his neurotransmitter and neuroendocrine alterations will eventually occur. Dopamine depletion is hypothesized to result from overstimulation of these neurons and excessive synaptic metabolism of the neurotransmitter. It is this depletion of dopamine that may underlie dysphoric aspects of cocaine abstinence, and cocaine cravings.  With many research findings on cocaine relations with dopamine, it is clear that cocaine addiction stems from the depletion of synaptic dopamine in the mesolimbic dopamine reward system, leading to a dysphoric withdrawal state that drives cocaine seeking to restore dopamine to normal, drug-dependence level.

After using cocaine for a long time, your brain will be conditioned to use cocaine in order to raise cocaine to the required levels and this result in addicted brain that can’t function without taking cocaine. At this stage it will be hard for an addict to quit using this drug as every time you try to quit all the withdrawal symptoms will set in thereby causing addiction and dependence thereafter. These cravings contribute not only to addiction but to relapse after a hard-won sobriety especially when the addict encounters triggers.

Norepinephrine and Drug Addiction

Norepinephrine is a very vital neurotransmitter in the brain that is also one of the most abundant in the brain. It is important for such roles as selective attention, general arousal, and stress reactions in challenging environments. Norepinephrine has been implicated by several studies as a key mediator of drug reward for three primary reasons. First, the noradrenergic pathways support intracranial self-stimulation (ICSS) and modulate drug-induced changes in ICSS threshold. Secondly, the biochemical activity of psychostimulant drugs includes blockade of Norepinephrine reuptake and enhancement of Norepinephrine release and thirdly, compounds that interfere with Norepinephrine synthesis or signaling influence drug self-administration. The idea that drugs of abuse act via the endogenous reward systems in the brain first arose when psychostimulants such as amphetamine and cocaine have been found to alter support intracranial self-stimulation thresholds. One interpretation of these results was that Norepinephrine mediates the effect of psychostimulants on support intracranial self-stimulation, because these drugs cause Norepinephrine release, block Norepinephrine reuptake or do both.


In a 1970s research done by Davis WM and Smith SG in a study titled: Catecholaminergic mechanisms of reinforcement: direct assessment by drug-self-administration, it was found that catecholamines were important in the mediation of opiate self-administration. in this research, a series of experiments showed that depletion of Norepinephrine and dopamine with amphetamine , a drug which is known to inhibit tyrosine hydroxylase prevents or attenuates the self-administration of morphine in rodents and in nonhuman primates as was shown earlier by Pozuelo and Kerr in 1972.

Finally, Drug addiction is a vice that should be fought by all means that is why we at AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center are committed to availing help to addicts and offering them a place to call home. We offer NER Treatment and Amino acid therapy that are the most effective approaches to addiction treatment and recovery. You call on Dr. Dalal Akoury (MD) today and begin your journey to victory against addiction.

Dopamine and Norepinephrine and Their Roles in Causing Addiction


The Need For Addiction Healing Centers

Addiction Healing Centers-Restoration of the Mind, Body and Spirit to Treat Addiction

Addiction isn’t a new term that needs to be defined, however it is great to appreciate the fact addiction is a really broad subject. Though many people only relate addiction to drugs of pleasure, addiction to behaviors like sex, food and gambling are a part of us. Regrettably, most of the addicts we have today are addicted to harmful substances that therefore dictate that they be offered a whole person treatment. As known addiction to a drug isn’t only a problem in the sense of financial and behavioral aspects but rather on the damage that these substances do to our bodies. The most affected system in the body is the nervous system which is very crucial in coordination of messages that are sent from various parts of the system to initiate specific action that our daily lives revolve around. The brain and the rest of the nervous system especially the neurotransmitters are highly damaged after a long term use of certain drugs of pleasure. Due to this it is necessary that any attempt to treat addiction and restore the normal functions of the body should include therapies that aim at restoring the normal functioning of the neurotransmitters and the rest of the nervous system that might have been damaged by long term use of these drugs of abuse.

addiction healing centers

The severity of addiction will however determine the type of treatment that an addict is accorded, there are situations where a patient may suffer from a combination of drugs and behavioral addiction. There are also other co-occurring conditions that may work together to make the life of an individual addict miserable. Think of sex addiction, gambling addiction and alcohol addiction all in one brain! Can you imagine the magnitude of damage that such a person will suffer in the whole of his nervous system? Correcting such defects in the entire system of an addict will require multi-facet approach to ensure that the addict is completely healed and his health is restored. Treating the symptoms of addiction as most doctors do or other used to do may only serve as a momentary relief but will not help the patient to quit the use of drugs.

It is because of the gap that existed in the past, when all treatment options available for addicts only focused on treating the symptoms of addiction like depression that has been for a long time been addressed by giving ant-depressants. The antidepressants will work for a short time but the problem that lies deep in the malfunctioning neurotransmitter like dopamine and serotonin will remain unresolved.  To address these issues, several addiction healing centers have since been established to give the patients what they need most; whole-person healing. whole person healing is achieved through the practice of integrative medicine that may include both orthodox and traditional herbal medicine as well as dietary approaches to help not only quell the severity of the symptoms suffered by these addicts but also to help correct the damage that addiction to substance and other behaviors does to the brain and the entire nervous system. when the functions of the nervous system is restored, it can now be easy to help an addict to escape the bars of addiction as the body will be naturally fit to quell the craving for the substance of abuse.

Most addiction healing centers deal with addiction of forms as serious, chronic and potentially life-threatening disease that requires a full range of comprehensive, evidence-based addiction treatment services to completely manage and overcome once and for all but this requires full commitment and cooperation of the patient.

Restoration of the mind, body and spirit to treat addiction

Addiction Healing CentersThrough advances in the medical industry, there are several addiction healing centers that are now offering holistic approach to treatment of addiction victims. These approaches are geared towards Restoration of the mind, body and spirit because it is by this that addicts can achieve healing once and for all. The harmony of the human being is critical in healing of addiction this is because addiction interferes with the chemical composition of the brain which is the engine that drives the entire body. This leads to organs, cells and tissues being maimed hence can’t perform effectively. To achieve wellness of the mind, body and spirit, most addiction healing centers utilize several strategies such as proper nutrition, body cleansing or detoxification, exercise, yoga, tai chi, herbal medication, orthodox meditation, hobby exploration such as like dancing, hiking and even singing. All these are explored to achieve a balance in the body.

The advantage of seeking help from addiction healing centers is that they offer varied addiction healing approaches that may include; cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), Eye Movement Desensitization and Reprocessing (EMDR), 12-step philosophy, somatic therapies, nutritional counseling, psychiatric support, massage, yoga, Tai Chi, herbal therapies and adventure-based therapies that cater to all manner of addictions, both behavioral and substance related. These centers also have staffs who are vastly experienced in handling addiction cases. They can also customize treatment to suit every patient’s condition belief and preferences all in a bid to restore the mind the body and the spirit.

Finally, Behavioral addiction and drug addiction destroys wellness, therefore restoring health of mind, body, and spirit is essential in recovery. Dr. Dalal Akoury has done extensive work in addiction treatment and recovery. You may contact her to fix an appointment. Better still, you may visit us at AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Centre in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina and experience the best practices in holistic addiction healing and recovery.

Addiction Healing Centers-Restoration of the Mind, Body and Spirit to Treat Addiction



Herbs That Increase Dopamine Level

Herbs That Increase Dopamine Level

Popularly known as the brain’s feel good hormone, dopamine is responsible for sending feelings of well-being and pleasure into the body.  Apart from this known function, other functions of dopamine include; control weight, energy levels, and supports brain and heart health. Without it, we would be more fat, unhappy, and tired. Dopamine is one of the most crucial neurotransmitters in the body. Dopamine has very many functions in the body but to many people it is famous for its good feeling effects that it is always identified with but this should not be the case as it has functions beyond the mesolimbic pathway. In the brain dopamine plays such roles as: It plays a big role in starting movement, and the destruction of dopamine neurons in an area of the brain called the substantia nigra is what produces the symptoms of Parkinson’s disease. Dopamine also plays an important role as a hormone acting to inhibit prolactin to stop the release of breast milk. Back in the mesolimbic pathway, dopamine can play a role in psychosis, and many antipsychotics for treatment of schizophrenia target dopamine. Dopamine is involved in the frontal cortex in executive functions like attention. In the rest of the body, dopamine is involved in nausea, in kidney function, and in heart function. Owing to its many functions that are all crucial, it is important that dopamine be in good levels for the optimal performance of the body.


Dopamine is crucial in our bodies but the use of drugs of abuse will lead to depletion of dopamine giving rise to some diseases like depression among others. Some drugs of leisure are loved for their euphoric feelings; they affect the normal production of brain chemicals. At the beginning they may induce a sudden surge in the production of feel good brain chemicals, however when you have used the drugs for some time they will lead to depletion in the levels of the brain chemicals such as serotonin and dopamine. In the brain the production of neurotransmitter happens naturally without intervention of any other drug. These basic neurotransmitters include; dopamine, serotonin, GABA, acetylcholine. The body also produces other chemicals known as endorphins which work as the body’s own opiates functioning to fight pain naturally.

These neurotransmitters have specific functions that they accomplish in the body. Each function is important and works in conjunction with the functions of the other neurotransmitters to make life what it ought to be. These functions are; Serotonin regulates sleep and appetite, Acetylcholine for processing information and memory, GABA acts as your calming neurotransmitter while dopamine is the feel good chemical, plays an important role in mood, energy, attitude, motivation.

When you use these drugs of pleasure thy hike the levels of dopamine in the brain beyond the accepted levels. This will force the brain to find a means by which to suppress the production of the neurotransmitter that has been hiked by drug use. naturally, the production of dopamine will be reduced by the brain after sensing that the hike in the levels of dopamine is caused by factors out of the body, therefore when a person who has been using drugs stops using them, the levels of dopamine and serotonin will be too low below the normal levels and this beckons such feelings of depression, anxiety, nervousness and lack of interest in everything. The level of dopamine in the body can however be restored naturally by use of herbs. Here are some of the herbs that are effective in restoring levels of dopamine even after drug use.

The Dopamine Boosters

St. John’s wort Ginseng– ginseng does not only increase the level of dopamine in the body but also works in rejuvenating, restorative, boosts energy and vitality and is tonic to the brain. Ginseng is often prescribed for patients fighting depression which is a common symptom of withdrawal from drug use. This herb is a better therapy for those who are under physical, emotional, mental or spiritual stress as it is a very strong antidepressant and adaptogenic. Ginseng promotes strong nerves, sound sleep, improves memory, clear thinking and enhances concentration.

Red clover -Red clover not only increases the dopamine levels in the brain but also nourishes the entire body, provides plenty of protein, B vitamins, and calcium, all essential brain nourishing nutrients.

St. John’s wort -St. John’s wort is effective against mild to moderate depression, alleviates anxiety, insomnia, and irritability and eases pain. It increases the level of dopamine in the brain as well.

Peppermint– contrary to what many people believe, peppermint is not psychoactive but is rather sedating, stimulating and pain relieving. Peppermint is one of the many herbs that can be used to restore the level of dopamine in the brain and restore the normal bodily functions.

Fenugreek -Fenugreek is a herb and a spice commonly eaten in many parts of the world, and has been used for centuries by practitioners of Ayurvedic Herb medicine and Traditional Chinese Medicine. It also increases the levels of dopamine and so can be used by patients whose dopamine level have floored as a result of drug use.

Today the patients have varied options when it comes to restoring the levels of testosterone in the body, however going the natural way is more beneficial as it is safe and inexpensive as well. It is good to note that by increasing the level of dopamine in your body, you are setting good grounds for addiction treatment and recovery. However, these problems need to be treated effectively through integrative medicine. Dr. Dalal Akoury (MD) is an expert at this.  Call her on (843) 213-1480 for help.

Herbs That Increase Dopamine Level



Mixing alcohol with other drugs

Mixing alcohol with other drugs – Long term effects of heavy drinking


Mixing alcohol with other drugs is not an option, it is complicated and life threatening. Seek for help immediately.

Whichever way you look at alcohol consumption you will be rest assured that up to 98% will be all negative effects – and in fact of the said benefits three quarters are concoction benefits with do not last for instance being talkative or gaining some level of confidence while under the influence of alcohol may be seen as a benefit but as soon as time lapses and sobriety resurface you lose the benefit instantly. I believe that from this introduction we can confess that alcohol is dangerous on its own and what about if the consumer mixes alcohol with other drugs? We are getting into that shortly but in the meantime let us look at some of the effects of alcohol alone without other drugs. People who drink heavily for a long time may experience the following:

  • Brain and nerve damage
  • High blood pressure and strokes
  • Liver disease
  • Damage to the fetus, for pregnant women
  • Diseases of the stomach, digestive system and pancreas
  • Breast cancer and throat cancer
  • Low sex hormone levels
  • Alcohol dependence

These are not experiences you would want to be associated with in life because they are not only bad but also life threatening. I will tell you without a second thought that if you’re taking alcohol then the best thing you can do for your dear life is to stop and seek help from the experts like doctor Dalal Akoury of AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center for an expert opinion.
You may have not known but it is said that there are some limited benefits of alcohol consumption particularly to the people age 45 and above, this should not motivate you into drinking if you’re not. You must not start drinking to try getting some of these health benefits instead you should keep off drinking because you’re better off eating a healthy diet, exercising regularly and avoiding smoking.

Mixing alcohol with other drugs is dangerous

Alcohol and other drugs don’t mix and attempting this can be very fatal. For instance if you were to mix marijuana or club drugs (e.g. ecstasy, ketamine, GHB) with alcohol it will certainly be very difficult to make informed  and smart decisions. You will be in consistent problems with the authorities because you’re not in control of yourself. You are likely to get into dangerous situations, to be injured or to injure someone else in the process. I plain language mixing alcohol with other substances is life threatening. Doing this may trigger your body to react violently causing you pain, headaches, cramps or vomiting. This is the last thing you would want to do. DON’T mix alcohol with any other drug.

Legality of alcohol

Unfortunately alcohol is legal in as much as we are revealing the dangerous effects of this substances (alcohol) it is among the many addictive drugs allowed for human usage. The usage is limited to certain age bracket is a legal drug if you are of meaning that you can only use or buy alcohol if you’re within the legally allowed age. Currently in many nations across the globe the recommended age for drinking is 18 year though in some countries this limit can be up to 19 years or even more.

The law about drinking and driving

Many lives are unnecessarily lost on the roads globally due to drink driving. Studies have also established that alcohol is the major cause of many of these deaths and because of these nearly all states across the globe are taking this seriously by enforcing stringent laws to protect and save lives. Drink driving has become a serious criminal offence and driving with blood alcohol content of 0.08 % and above will land you in the wrong books with the authorities. Other general illegalities and penalties include:

  • To drive while impaired even if your BAC is less than .08 per cent.
  • Declining to provide a breath sample when asked by the police is also illegal.
  • Suspension of your driver’s license on the spot for 90 days
  • Separate criminal charges to face in court.
  • Also, if you are learning to drive and have a Graduated Driver’s License, you are not allowed to drive after drinking ANY alcohol.

These are just but a few rules and penalties applicable in most countries in an effort to bringing order on our roads. The same penalties and more are also applicable where one mixes alcohol with other drugs. To demonstrate the seriousness of this problem the authorities in Ontario have made even much harsher penalties to offenders. For instance if you are convicted of impaired driving more than once the penalties is as follows:

  • First conviction – your driver’s license is suspended for one year and a further $600 fine.
  • Second conviction – your driver’s license is suspended for three years and 14 days in jail.
  • Third conviction – your license is suspended for 10 years or for life plus 90 days in jail
  • Fourth conviction: such offenders will never own a driver’s license in Ontario soil again and they will still be sentenced to jail for another 90 days.
Reducing risks and getting help

Matters relating to alcohol abuse and drug addiction are very complicated and needs proper plan in the presence and for the future to stay safe. You may want to consider the following as guide:

  • Have a back-up plan for getting home (have money and a phone number for a taxi, or call your parents or a friend whom you trust).
  • If you drink at all, it is best not to drive at all.
  • When relying on others for a ride, make sure you know how much the driver has drunk before deciding to get in the car (this includes rides with adults, too).
  • If you drink, pace your drinks, have some non-alcoholic drinks too, and eat before you drink and while you are drinking.
  • Plan ahead for overnight stays. Make sure you know how much your friends are drinking and how they are getting home.
  • Don’t mix alcohol with medicines or illegal drugs. Check with your pharmacist to be sure.

In conclusion in everything you do your safety should come fast. Why must you go to jail for things you can deal with locally? I know it easy to say that you can easily deal with addiction matters but when it comes to the action part it becomes difficult, Dr. Dalal Akoury is an expert in this discipline and has been of help to many addicted patients the world over. In her effort of reducing drug addiction from our societies, she founder of AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center a facility in which all problems relating to alcohol abuse and drug addiction are professionally taken care of in the most natural ways. This is the place to be for all your addiction problems and doctor Akoury together with her team of experts will administer exclusive NER Recovery Treatment to you for prosperity. The facility also care for other physicians and health care professionals through training, clinical apprenticeships, webinars and seminars and in fact any qualified professional can now be a part of this truly successful and fast addiction recovery treatment.

Mixing alcohol with other drugs – Long term effects of heavy drinking




Alcohol the trigger of Violence

Alcohol the trigger of Violence – Drug Addiction


Alcohol the trigger of violence. The effects of alcohol in families an society is worrying. Solutions must be found soon

Alcohol is currently leading among substances being abused the world over and because of this it is one of the substance that triggers violence the most. The frequency with which violence triggered by alcohol consumption are being aired on the different media platform is just a confirmation of the seriousness of the matter. While it is true that this substance is widely abused it must be made clear that not everyone using alcohol in whatever units becomes aggressive or provoked to violence, and in fact it is only a few people who will be violent after drinking. The most painful thing is that these violent acts and behaviors normally have far reaching effect or consequences to the family members and friends and by extension the general membership of the public.

Who’s at risk?

The character of being violent when drunk is not an excuse in anyway, in most cases the people who become violent when drunk are those with questionable personalities meaning that these people are also capable of being violent even when sober. Studies of alcohol and aggressive behavior have established that individuals who are more short-tempered are poor managers of their anger in other wards they are those people who cannot  control emotions and they display lower levels of compassion towards others when sober these people are more likely to be aggressive when they have alcohol in their system. Gender also a factor and has an influence where men are more likely to be aggressive than women when drunk.

Out of control

There is reasonable proof that elusive variations in the brain functions in some individuals act abnormally than others when under influence of just a little drink and we can measure the effects of alcohol in one’s brain is by examining how individuals use their brain’s executive system. This is the section of the brain tasked with issues like decision making, problem solving and reasoning. It serves like the command centre of the brain which instructs people to slow down and evaluate the possible consequences even as they steer themselves towards seeing the best long-term results. When the brain executive system fails to regulate our behaviors, we often become vulnerable to our instincts which for many resolve to violent instead of being remorseful and taking deep breath when we feel irritated and insulted. It is important noting that some people have poor executive control than others, and if these are male, then they are more likely to be aggressive after drinking alcohol.

Young adults

We could be guided to reach conclusion that luck of executive control could be the reason why adolescents and young adults are so quick into violent behavior when drunk. It has been made known to us that our brains continue to develop well into our 20s and that one of the last parts of the brain to develop is the prefrontal lobe, the section tasked with reigning in impulses through executive control.

People who have a dependence on alcohol have a “double whammy” when it comes to executive control and whenever they consume alcohol their executive functioning is impaired due to the alcohol in their system. But their consistent use of alcohol also leads to poorer executive function even when they aren’t drinking, an effect that may prolong up to a year even after they stop drinking.

Attentive and alarmed

When someone accidentally bumps into you in a crowded bar or at a sporting event, most of us are able to quickly shrug it off as a gentle interruption to our day. But add alcohol to the equation and an innocuous bump can suddenly be interpreted as a serious threat, or even a deliberate act of aggression. Alcohol can affect information processing and your ability to determine how much threat is actually present in the environment.

Alcohol can alter our perception of the world and explains that any increased sensitivity to apparent threats isn’t just about what’s going on in the brain. Alcohol’s effects on the heart can also play a role. You can get palpitations, or what is known as tachyarrhythmias, as a consequence of alcohol and a racing heart can often be misinterpreted as a threat.

Expectations matter

Much as we would want to see a violent free society the indulgence of alcohol betrays this fact and therefore can begin seeing the possibilities of future violence in our children behaviors especially when they are being brought up in violent prone neighborhood.  When the children observe violence from their drunken parents or watch programs associated with alcoholic violence then this is likely to propagate in their minds and the evidence may be revealed when children resort violence among themselves when solving their own disputes.

Let’s look further for example a society where the number of bars and drinking joints are more than schools, churches, and retail shops put together there is likelihood that there will be frequent alcohol related violence to the point of condoning the acts. As sad as it may be this is true because this is what the society is used to and in fact in such places you will not be surprised to see people spectating when a fight breaks out this is so because what they expect in their daily lives is drinking and violence after all that is what their neighborhood is all about.

However the power of expectation can also play a part in influencing how people behave when they consume different alcoholic drinks, quite different from the physical impact of differing alcohol concentrations. People have different expectations for what happens when they drink wine, liquor or beer. None the less it is not very clear whether certain drinks like these ones mention help to increase aggression even though drinks rich in caffeine can lead people to take more risks than they would otherwise do.

Reducing violent behavior

This can be very challenging in many ways however professionally one of the greatest challenges for psychologists when attending to people who are more likely to be aggressive when they drink is teaching them about temper control. Nonetheless it is important noting that introducing anger management programs should be the starting point for those who end up seeking help when alcohol gets them into trouble with the law enforcement agencies and their families. This can be done by creating safety plans which enables them to study the internal sensations of anger, how to identify them and the solutions necessary to turn down the volume and be moderate when things are a bit hot.

Because alcohol is that addictive the kind of professional to be engaged must be one with great experience in addiction and has the capacity to contain the problem. Doctor Dalal Akoury is one such professional who has had great experience of more than two decades in matters addiction. She is also the founder of AWAREmed Health and Wellness Resource Center where together with her team of experts they focus on Neuroendocrine Restoration (NER) to reinstate normality through realization of the oneness of Spirit, Mind, and Body, Unifying the threesome into ONE this is an effective way of ensuring reduction of alcohol related violence in the most natural way.

Alcohol the trigger of Violence – Drug Addiction