Wanting but loathing…aka the dark playground…

From Pyschology Today by Richard Cytowic …

Interestingly, when they write about this dopamine is tied to desire …

Dr. Kent Berridge at the University of Michigan challenged prevailing wisdom years ago when he insisted that dopamine wasn’t the reward neurotransmitter at all but rather the one coupled to desire.

…he goes on to say once set, the triggering situations in the dopamine is permanent.

What he discovered is that addictive things that successfully commandeer the dopamine network can change it permanently.

What can also be taken from this is that the craving is supposed to be more important to the effect than the addiction – whether it be a chemical/food/tv/thrill seeking etc …

Individuals become hypersensitive to the cues that trigger their particular craving—drinking scenes in film and television, cigarette displays or seeing someone smoking, the street corner where they used to score. The result is what Berridge calls heightened “incentive motivation,” or intense wanting. Yet—and this is the odd part—a Pavlovian conditioned response makes individuals (and animals) come to prefer the cue over the substance. The anticipation of scoring, downing the cocktail, or inserting the needle can become more rewarding than the substance that one was originally hooked on.

This pattern is explained in depth at Wait but why’s page … Link

 

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