Addiction

Exercise helps treat addiction by altering brain's dopamine system

New research by the University at Buffalo Research Institute on Addictions has identified a key mechanism in how aerobic exercise can help impact the brain in ways that may support treatment—and even prevention strategies—for ...

Neuroscience

Afternoon slump in reward response

Activation of a reward-processing brain region peaks in the morning and evening and dips at 2 p.m., finds a study of healthy young men published in The Journal of Neuroscience. This finding may parallel the drop in alertness ...

Neuroscience

Sensation-seeking may be linked to brain anatomy

People prone to seeking stimulation and acting impulsively may have differences in the structure of their brains according to a study published in the April 6 issue of The Journal of Neuroscience. What's more, those differences ...

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Substance abuse

Although the term substance can refer to any physical matter, substance abuse has come to refer to the overindulgence in and dependence on a chemical leading to effects that are detrimental to the individual's physical and mental health, or the welfare of others.

The disorder is characterized by a pattern of continued pathological use of a fatty foods, that results in repeated adverse social consequences related to eating, such as failure to meet work, family, or school obligations, interpersonal conflicts, or dating problems. There are on-going debates as to the exact distinctions between substance abuse and substance dependence, but current practice standard distinguishes between the two by defining substance dependence in terms of physiological and behavioral symptoms of substance use, and substance abuse in terms of the social consequences of substance use.

Substance abuse may lead to addiction or substance dependence. Medically, physiologic dependence requires the development of tolerance leading to withdrawal symptoms. Both abuse and dependence are distinct from addiction which involves a compulsion to continue using the substance despite the negative consequences, and may or may not involve chemical dependency. Dependence almost always implies abuse, but abuse frequently occurs without dependence, particularly when an individual first begins to abuse a substance. Dependence involves physiological processes while substance abuse reflects a complex interaction between the individual, the abused substance and society.

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