Health Psychology (not clinical)

Define substance abuse.
Occurs when people use chemicals for reasons other than their intended purpose. Usually for self medication.
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Define tolerance.
The diminishing effect due to regular usage of a drug. Requires the user to take increasingly larger doses in order to experience the drugs effect.
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Whats a synapse?
The junction between two neurones; an axon and dendrite. Crucial electro chemical action takes place here.
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Depresses activity in brain, GABA increases which slows NT's - communication slowed so behave in unacceptable manner. Effects - flushed, speech and perception effected, relaxed and confident. Tolerance - 3 weeks 50% more needed.
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Stimulates opoid receptors, mimic endorphines - reduce pain and rewarding. Effects - rewarding, euphoria, sleepy and relaxed. Nausea and chronic constipation. Tolerance very quickly; tenfold in 3/4 months.
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chemical messenger - reduces activity of neurones it binds too. Too little = anxious.
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Movement and emotional response, ability to experience pain and pleasure.
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Mood regulation and balance. Depressed and poor appetite if there is too little.
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Interact with opiate receptors to reduce perception of pain.
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Two explanations of addiction?
Biochemical and Operant conditioning.
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Biochemical explanation - DESCRIBE.
Stimulant action - increase NT activity, wakefulness and excitation of dopamine/serotonin. Depressant - slow activity, e.g. alcohol boost gaba = slow communication in brain. Down reg.; reduce receptor sites available and sensitivity so more needed
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What is reward deficiency syndrome?
Deficit in dopamine system. Insufficient number of receptors so harder to naturally produce pleasure and rewarding feelings and thus more likely to seek this from drugs. A1DRD2 gene thought responsible.
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Operant conditioning - DESCRIBE
Drug taking is determined by its consequences. We neglect lT consequences, the power of immediate reinforcers allows us to form good associations, positive reinforcement such as pleasurable feelings ad negative reinforcement such as withdrawal symp.
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Treatment of drug addiction - what are the two methods?
Drug therapy. Aversion therapy.
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Drug therapy - aim?
To give methadone to increase tolerance towards a drug and convert the addiction. Slowly decrease methadone so no drug is longer needed.
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features of drug therapy.
Methadone = euphoria and pleasure. Prescribed increasing amounts to build tolerance to convert addiction. Dosage slowly decreased until no longer need either drug.
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Evidence for drug therapy
Warren et al. 21 prisons to treat heroin addiction using methadone. Useful in 900 inmates and stopped addiction in 20 days costing $3500.
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Aim of aversion therapy
To convert addictions by creating a negative correlation with that drug.
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features of aversion therapy
Alcohol is paired with an emetic called antabuse. Induces severe nausea and vomiting creating a negative association which should avert addiction.
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Evidence of aversion therapy
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Blattler procedure
266 pts with a mean use of 10 years and two previous attempts of recovery. 18 months in a non residential treatment programme in 6 different swath clinics. 479 mg daily self injected 2/3 times a day.
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Blattler findings and conclusions.
Cocaine use reduced from 84% to 48% and for daily users from 30% to 6%. Illicit heroin use decreased to only 25%. Heroin maintenance can help reduce cocaine use and contact with that scene.
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Howard aim
To assess the degree of aversion treatment to convert 82 alcohol dependent clients.
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Howard 2001 procedure.
82 pt's (15F) in a treatment centre in washington. 34 y/o white americans, 84% of which are in full time employment. 10 day trial including five sessions. given a 600ml emetic in PAD which causes vomiting.
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Howard findgins and conclusions.
lLow levels of desire to drink, high levels in confidence to refrain from alcohol over the next 2/6 months. 65.9 positive alcohol related experiences decreased to 35. Supports efficacy for production of aversion in addiction.
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Animal studies
Have to chose appropriate animal and reasonable number. Tightly controlled and artificial environment. Specialist apparatus and license from home office needed
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Human studies
Questionaiire - gather information about experiences and treatments of addiction. lab experiments; PT's given drug to explore experiences and behaviour. Use users and non-users to explore ST and LT effects.
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Talk to frank - AIM
Uses openness as a strategy for people to seek advice on drug abuse.
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Talk to frank - features.
ensure that youth understand the risks and dangers involved, help youth know where to seek help/advice, give parents confidence to talk to children, support professionals working with youths.
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Key Issue - Is the media the main cause for drug addiction?
To explore the reasons and psychological theories for th consistent rise. 3 concepts; Bio; media is not responsible. learning; yes as role models act as VL and VR. Social; partially, over exposure to desensitisation.
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Card 2


Define tolerance.


The diminishing effect due to regular usage of a drug. Requires the user to take increasingly larger doses in order to experience the drugs effect.

Card 3


Whats a synapse?


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Card 4




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Card 5




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