Motivation and the Brain Essay

1106 Words Oct 14th, 2013 5 Pages
Motivation and the Brain
Judith Alvarez
PSY/355
November 26, 2012
Steve Northam

Motivation and the Brain Motivation is driven by reward. Whether it is a promotion, a paycheck, good grades or recognition, there is a part of the brain that fires up when there is a reward. The portion of the brain that fires up when there is reward is located in the limbic system portion of the brain. It is here in the limbic system where the brain controls and regulates the ability to feel pleasure. It is like a chain reaction- a particular behavior leads to a reward, which leads to a feeling of pleasure, which motivates us to repeat the particular behavior that led to a reward, which led to that feeling of pleasure, and so on
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This is how reward and pleasure are linked together. Experiencing the reward and pleasure sends motivation to continue the behavior, thus a motivation to continue the behavior. The brain continues to evolve and change to adapt to the presence of the drugs. The pathways in the brain begin to physically change. The parts of the brain that is responsible for judgment, learning and memory, along with the reward and pleasure circuitry are all affected. The minute this happens, drug-seeking behavior now becomes motivated by habits, almost like a reflex. This is where a drug user now becomes a drug addict.
Extrinsic Factors One extrinsic factor on drug use and drug addiction is environment. Personal and natural environments play a big role in some of the causes of drug addiction. There has been a definitive link between a high stressed home environment and substance abuse. This has also been the case in a highly stressed home environment as well. Another environmental factor can be school, peers and work environments. You are whom you keep. In other words, you become just like those you keep around you. Constantly hanging around people that abuse substances increases the chances of addiction. This is also a prime environment for the introduction of new substances to abuse. Abusers tend to be drawn to other abusers and also work environments are ok with substance abuse. Substance abuse early in life

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