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How Addiction Impacts Learning and Memory

How Addiction Impacts Learning and MemoryThe brain is a complex organ that determines how San Diego residents function. While drug use can affect all parts of the brain, there are certain parts in particular that can prevent the user from learning or remembering information, including the following:

  • Frontal lobe – The frontal lobe is used to make decisions, maintain organization, make plans and solve problems.
  • Temporal lobe – The temporal lobe contains the memory receptors and is the center for emotions. It is also responsible for the ability to communicate through listening and speaking.

How Drugs Can Affect the Brain of a San Diego Resident

The brain responds to satisfaction, such as the satisfaction received after a workout or a great meal. Your brain can also respond to satisfaction that is provided by drugs, which commonly drives addicts to continue to use. A San Diego resident’s ability to learn and memorize can be affected by a number of drugs, including the following:

  • Marijuana – Marijuana use can affect both the frontal and temporal lobes of the cerebral cortex. When under the influence, the user may become lethargic and slur his speech. This can become detrimental to a San Diego resident’s communication skills and pose a problem when trying to learn something new. Marijuana can also have an impact on the user’s short-term memory. When THC, the psychoactive constituent in marijuana, reaches the brain, it can work to shut down the memory centers of the brain. Marijuana can also cause heightened anxiety or paranoia, which could cause the user to behave irrationally. This abnormal behavior can have an effect on the frontal lobe, where decision making and problem solving occur.
  • Cocaine – Cocaine use can affect the brain’s levels of dopamine, a chemical which is stored between the temporal lobe and the brain stem in a section called the substantia nigra. When a San Diego resident is under the influence of cocaine, his brain is triggered to release those neurotransmitters, resulting in euphoria. Cocaine use can eventually break down the body’s natural method of producing dopamine, which may lead to addiction. This effect can prevent the brain from learning and retaining information since the brain can no longer produce the dopamine needed for the reward system.

In addition to marijuana and cocaine, a number of other drugs can keep a San Diego resident’s brain from being able to retain information, communicate and learn new things. The most effective way to learn and protect your memory is to avoid drug use or seek professional treatment and find lasting recovery.

Finding Help for Addicts in San Diego

If you or someone you love in San Diego is struggling with addiction, please call our toll-free helpline now. Our counselors are available 24 hours a day to answer any questions you may have about how addiction impacts learning and memory. We can also help you find the best treatment option for your situation. Please call now.