Behavior Disorder occurs when a person lacks the muscle paralysis that’s characteristic of R.E.M. sleep, and thus they act out their dreams. It’s more common in men over 50, and around 33% of that population will go on to develop Parkinson’s disease within three years. This disorder is also seen in people withdrawing from alcohol dependency, or those on specific types of medication. Psychoactive Drugs are substances that affect the brain, and thus alter psychological processes. Psychopharmacology is the study of these drugs. The drugs normally exert their effects by affecting neurotransmitters. They will either enhance or inhibit the neurotransmitters; those that enhance are called Agonists , while inhibitors are called Antagonists . Certain
agonists can essentially mimic neurotransmitters and bind to its receptors and mimic its effects. Antagonists block or inhibit neurotransmitters. One way they do this is by binding to a receptor and doing nothing, thereby just keeping the neurotransmitter from binding. - Substance Abuse : A pattern of drug use that disrupts one’s life, be it through financial, legal, or relationship problems, etc. - Addiction : Repetitive or compulsive use of a drug. This usually has both psychological and physical dependences. - Psychological dependence is where a person feels that they must take the drug in order to feel good. Physical dependence happens when a body becomes used to the presence of a drug, and thus needs that drug in order to function normally. People who become physically dependent on a drug will often experience a Withdrawal Syndrome . These are undesired side-effects of stopping drug use, and tend to be opposites of the effects the drug normally has. For example, those who come down off opiates, which give pleasure and happiness, tend to experience depression, anxiety, pain, and other symptoms of that nature. Tolerance refers to what happens when one takes drugs continuously; the person will build up a tolerance and thus need more of the drug to experience the same effects. One can also build up a tolerance to only specific effects of a drug. The body tries to keep things normally; with drugs, the body does its best to counteract the drug’s effects, and deal with the lack of the drug when one comes off of it. Drug Interaction is the notion that drugs can influence each other; certain drugs can actually magnify the effects of other drugs. -One major category of drugs is the Depressants . They are called such because they decrease activity in the central nervous system. Thus, they tend to produce relaxation and tiredness. They normally affect GABA, often enhancing its inhibitory effects. Alcohol has many widespread effects despite being only a depressant. It inhibits almost every aspect of thinking, decreases activity in the frontal lobes (lessens impulse control, disrupts planning and inhibition),
decreases activity in the hippocampus (meaning it damages the memory, though “black-outs” seem to be a result of impairment of R.E.M. sleep), decreases activity in the cerebellum (balance and motor skills), and depresses the hindbrain (breathing and heart rate). Thus, with
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