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Lecture 7

Lecture 7

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Ted Petit

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Lecture 7 Previously focus was on transmitter and transmitter systems Aspects of transmitter systems Alterations in transmitter systems: instead of from a disease perspective Instead of disease state: We will be talking about drugs Self-induced Chemicals that people willingly take Drugs: socially sensitive issue What one person may consider to be a drug does not have to be considered a drug by another person Coffee Cigarette - nicotine Legal at this place and at this time - Drug is an chemical you can use and ingest - Value is up to individual and society - In the past, cocaine was actually in Coca-cola. When it became illegal, that is when caffeine was put in Need to leave prejudices aside Need not bring personal prejudices into it Everyone has their own lines. E.g. alcohol is okay, but marijuana is not Alcohol, cigarettes, marijuana is all good, but cocaine is too dangerous Need to talk about these drugs as objectively as possible Not the promotion of the drug but an examination of how it affects the person and their behaviour Categories: Stimulants Depressants Hallucinogens Opiates Stimulants: have to activate the CNS Usually if you were to take an EEG, you would see the cerebral cortex go into active state Depressant would do the opposite We categorize drugs Marijuana is NOT an opiate Grouped into classes based on what they do to the nervous system Scientifically measurable General Concepts for ALL Drugs: Over the counter Drugs: Get from Canadian drug store, but do NOT need prescription. E.g. Aspirin with codeine. You do not need a prescription at this time to get it. In the US, you must have a prescription to get it E.g. Nicotine. In early 90s, people could smoke everywhere. Gradually that has been taken away. More and more laws have come into place when and where Laws over drugs change OVER TIME AND PLACE Social drugs: Nicotine, Caffeine, Alcohol. Do not need to go to a drugstore Not produced socially: We cannot go out and buy it legally. LSD for example, Marijuana , Cocaine Is produced and we can buy it but it was not produced for psychoactive effect: Airplane glue. Sniffing it may get you high but it was not specifically designed to do so Tolerance: The concept that if a drug is taken repeatedly, most drugs will show a decreasing behavioural effect. The more we take it, the less effect it will have. Many drugs do have a tolerance develop to them If we have drugs that alter a transmitter system, the more that we stimulate/alter that system, the more the postsynaptic side will compensate It will compensate by reducing the number or the sensitivity of the receptors Depressant: Under activity of the system. System will respond by increasing the sensitivity of the receptor Whatever the drug is, whatever behavioural effect it initiates will be reduced over time Tolerance is a behavioural term (referring to the behavioural effect) Exact mechanism is difference. Many different mechanism exist by which it can happen Tolerance can develop for alcohol Nothing to do with the brain - most has to do with liver enzymes. Withdrawal: If you have been taking the drug for a LONG period of time, then we STOP, we will get a craving Behavioural effect of withdrawal is EXACTLY OPPOSITE of the behavioural effect when the person is on the drug (usually) Whenever we come off of a drug, we will see an effect that is opposite to that of the original effect of the drug Behaviour of Clients - If a person is given a stimulant and then they are taken off, they will undergo a period of depression Lethargic, tired, sleepy, emotionally depressed Going through withdrawal, you will see patient becoming lethargic and sad It is not generally life threatening If a person is given a depressant and then they are taken off (e.g. barbiturates) whenever they come off their brain will be overstimulated Alcohol is a very commonly used CNS depressant Brain will become hyper excitable Possibly causing a seizure Very good chance they will go through a hyper excitable period: agitation, hyper-excitability, and in extreme cases seizures NEVER take a person off of depressant immediately: Instead you substitute with a different type of depressant, such as valium in the place of alcohol If just taken off immediately, could kill them Valium is also used when treating the alcoholics and smokers Alcoholics = #1 admission in psychiatric hospitals  Person enjoys and has become dependent on the drug Psychological Addiction: Person has become behaviorally dependent on the drug. Person is very attached to something and it is very hard to give it up. Really could be anything from cookies to girlfriend. Not very meaningful Physical Addiction: If we take drug away, there has to be some physical, measurable physiological withdrawal. Sweating, skin conductance, blood pressure. We can actually detect some sort of change in physiology More rapid the behavioural effect of a drug the more addicting it is Vodka could be more addictive than light beer Cocaine is much more obvious. Mild form: Coca leaf. Little bit might be drunk every day as tea Medium form: Coca powder Extreme form: Freebase, crack. Becomes more rapid and becomes more addicting. It is the same chemical being used in all cases, but a mild form it has a slow rush and is non-addicting, but the same chemical taken in a form that has a rapid effect (Crack) the exact same chemical can become more addicting It is more the rush - feeling something straight away as opposed to the actual chemical itself Stimulants:  Cause Cortical EEG to switch to an arousal state  ALL will inhibit sleep Caffeine: Most people do ingest Found in coffee, tea, sodas Coffee has more caffeine than tea It is also in headache remedies Aspirin, Caffeine, Codeine Stimulates the digestive system: anti - ADH
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