LivingAlcohol does not help to forget

Alcohol does not help to forget

beber-olvidarDoes alcohol help you forget? Quite the opposite. According to a study by the Wagoner Center for Alcohol and Addiction Research at the University of Texas (USA),drinking alcohol stimulates areas of our brain involved in learning and memory.

As published by neurobiologist Hitoshi Morikawa in the magazine Journal of Neuroscience, alcohol “reduces our conscious ability to remember information such as a friend’s name, the definition of a word or where we park the car; but our subconscious learns and remembers as well, and alcohol increases our ability to learn at this level.” In his experiments, Morikawa has found thatrepeated exposure to ethanol increases the synaptic plasticity of neurons in a key area of the brain for memory. In fact, it is becoming increasingly clear that addiction to alcohol and drugs could be considered a memory and learning disorder. According to Morikawa, alcoholics are not addicted to the experience of pleasure they obtain from drinking, but rather to the psychological context, behavior, and environment surrounding alcohol consumption. And that pushes them to repeat.

“We tend to think aboutdopamineas a neurotransmitter of happiness, but it is actually aneurotransmitter linked to learning“, clarifies the neuroscientist.” Its main effect is to strengthen the synapses that are active while it is released, “he adds. According to Morikawa,When we drink alcohol, the dopminergic system is stimulated, which “tells our brain that what it is doing at that moment is rewarding, that it must be remembered and repeated”. “Going to the bar, chatting with friends, eating certain foods and listening to certain music is also rewarding.” For this reason, “the more frequently we do these things while we drink alcohol, the more dopamine is released, and the more addictive the set of experiences that surround the use of this drug becomes”, concludes the researcher.

 

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