applied Neural PLasticity & dynamics
The brain has the amazing ability to change and rewire itself.
Lets use that as a tool and basis for treatment.
"If the misery of the poor be caused not by the laws of nature,
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¨ Addiction and addiction-like disorders affect millions directly, and have affected almost everyone indirectly.
¨ Current treatment strategies lack efficacy, as evidenced by the high relapse rates.
¨ Current medical interventions focus on drugs that simply fulfill the addiction cravings without providing a ’high,’ and then become a new lifelong addiction. Stop-gap treatments—not cures.
¨ The emphasis of current funding for addiction research is now drug development, or ‘translational’ research as it is being called — but that is just developing better stop-gaps, not answers.
¨ Addiction and addiction-like disorders are now going to be separated into ’disease’ and ’non-disease’ categories, even though the true problem in these disorders is the same:
¨ Perseverative/habitual behaviors and thoughts that a person can not consciously over ride and control.
¨ Damage to, and decrease functioning of, the flexible memory system (the executive functions of the brain).
¨ We need to know how the systems lose their ability to control and change behavior AFTER the drugs are gone, and that is NOT where funding is going right now.
¨ We need to develop new methods and therapies that help strengthen and rehabilitate the system.
¨ The brain is amazingly changeable (high plasticity). We use therapies based on this daily to help treat people with stroke damage and other brain trauma, but ignore this amazingly powerful tool when it comes to addiction and addiction-like behaviors.
¨ We need to explore new directions in drug development that can help facilitate this mental ‘physical therapy.’
¨ True treatments—ones that can be used for a short period to help rehabilitate the injured areas.
¨ We need funding to do it. The powers that control funding have decided they know the answer (replacement drug treatment), and now just have to show why it is correct, and as long as you follow that line you get funding.
¨ The antithesis of science. Like the ancient wizened leaders of society so entrenched in the dogma of the universe revolving around the earth, that they refused to listen to the facts and data, as they already knew the correct answer.
¨ We need to pursue the facts and data we have, not just create data to support a preconceived solution.