Brain, Mind and drugs. Structure, function and drug-related disorders

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Brain, Mind and drugs. Structure, function and drug-related disorders

February 2014
by: Serpelloni G, Alessandrini F, G Zoccatelli, Rimondo C, M Rubber, Bellamoli E, G Cuoghi

The most important neuropsychological functions and interaction with the adolescent, as the judgment, the understanding of reality, storing and learning, behavior control, decision-making and relational, have developed in humans in a long period of time and have features and functions necessary for survival, that allow us to interact and adapt to the demands of the environment in a consistent and flexible. A good mental capacity is closely related to the proper functioning of the brain structures underlying. The structure and functions of the brain of an individual are the unique product of the interaction between genetic and environmental information, experiences and individual learning. In this sense, the ways in which every brain responds to stimuli depend on the history of the individual, the inherited traits programmed into his genes, from all of the situations that it has experienced and stored, the behavior and habits. What we are and how we live depends primarily on the condition of our brain and the ability we have to keep it healthy and active. The use of any drug interferes with the normal functioning of the brain, altering perceptions, thoughts, actions and above all the ability to store and recall.
This is even more pronounced if the drug use occurs in a young person’s age, whose brains are still maturing. In fact, the brain begins to mature acquiring the stimuli of the outside world from birth, but complete this process only after 21 years, with great individual variability. Understandably, during this process the brain cells are particularly sensitive, and their physiological and natural aging can be easily altered and diverted by strong external stimuli, such as those produced by psychoactive substances. All drugs and alcohol, especially if taken during adolescence, can cause serious anomalies in the functioning neuro-psychic individual, especially by creating a storage distorted perceptions, experiences, feelings and also cognitive schemes and logical that are used under the effect of substances. Functional alterations are stored and are often linked to changes in brain structure.
The Drug Policy Department of the Presidency of the Council of Ministers has set up a series of research in neuroscience dependency designed to identify and document the effects of drugs on the brain to develop new forms of prevention. Using modern neuroimaging techniques, which currently represent one of the most advanced tools for studying the brain, you can “watch” the changes in the structure but also the operation resulting from the impairment of neuropsychological functioning in individuals who use drugs. With this brochure we want to provide information about the normal functioning of the human nervous system and how the use of psychoactive substances are able to alter it, with the intent to understand in a simple and clear mechanisms such readers and to encourage a style healthy life, free from drugs and alcohol and from any addiction.

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