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10 Dopamine Effects in Your Body You Should Know

by | Health

Jun 26, 2022

Dopamine (Dihydroxyphenethylamine) is a neurotransmitter. It handles transmitting signals from different parts of the body to the brain. It works with hormones in the body, as well. Dopamine plays a significant role in the mental functions of every human being. It’s one of those not-so-popular substances that direct our lives. The production of dopamine occurs in the brain, and it is the emissary between the neurons and cells. Here are 10 points on dopamine effects in your life you should know. 

1. Dopamine Plays A Vital Role In Mental Health

Too much secretion of dopamine in the brain may result in schizophrenia. The parts of the brain dependent on dopamine become hyperactive and cause hallucinations. A shortage of dopamine in the brain can cause Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD).

This disorder is a neurodevelopment issue and can sometimes be fatal. People with ADHD have difficulty concentrating and paying attention. Some of them end up becoming hyperactive most of the time. An interruption with the neurotransmitters usually results in different mental health issues. 

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2. Addictive Substances Affect Dopamine Level

Addictive substances distort the dopamine level of the brain. Most alcoholics and drug addicts have a deficiency in dopamine levels when they consume alcohol or drugs. There can be a blockage in the dopamine transporter due to alcohol, drugs, and sugar. When this happens, it leads to an increase in dopamine effects. Certain drugs like cocaine cause a double effect. They stop the brain from reabsorbing dopamine while increasing dopamine production.

Addiction is a result of the body using these substances to balance dopamine. This happens when the brain experiences a crash. The intense usage of these addictive substances causes dopamine regulators to crash.

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3. Dopamine Helps The Body’s Sexual Function

The brain and dopamine have a significant impact on the sex drive of a person. Researches show serotonin and dopamine play important in a man getting an erection. The control of erection and ejaculation is dependent on dopamine. A proper balance of dopamine levels optimizes the body’s sexuality. A low level of dopamine could result in low sex drive and other sexual dysfunctions.

Dopamine plays a crucial role in the arousal and orgasm of both males and females. Eating food that promotes dopamine production can improve sexual performance. It would help if you gave it a try. 

4. Imbalanced Dopamine Levels Cause Some Diseases

A decreased level of production of dopamine can result in Parkinson’s disease. Degeneration in a neuron will result in that neuron not sending a message to the brain. And this can affect the general well-being of the body and mind.

Parkinson’s disease matures in a substantia nigra part of the brain when the cells begin to die. As the diseases move to an advanced stage, the brain’s dopamine level reduces. The symptoms become more visible, making the patient develop tremors. Symptoms like difficulty walking, and other movement issues start manifesting.

Obese individuals have fewer receptors for dopamine effects in their bodies. It can lead to low numbers of dopamine receptors. It makes them more vulnerable to addictive behaviors, including compulsive food intake.

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5. Dopamine Can Save Lives

Doctors use the prescription of dopamine (Iinotropin) to treat low blood pressure. Reduced cardiac output is due to poor blood flow to vital organs. When the heart pumps an inadequate amount of blood, things don’t go well. In some cases, it can lead to septic shock.

The main ones associated with dopamine include faster heart rate and trouble breathing. Some people also experience irregular heartbeat and vomiting. People also experience chest pain, headache, and nausea. 

6. Dopamine In Pleasure And Reward

A lot of us have heard that dopamine is a feel-good neurotransmitter. It is in many ways so. Dopamine effects lead to pleasure and reward in the brain. Our neurological and psychological functioning get an effect by this hormone.

The release of dopamine occurs when your brain is expecting a reward. We regard certain activities as pleasure. When we desire to take part in it, it increases the dopamine level.

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7. Lack Of Sleep May Lower Dopamine Level

Lack of dopamine can make you feel sleepy, so also lack of sleep may reduce it. Depriving yourself of rest can lead to a decrease in dopamine receptors in the morning. Dopamine acts on the pineal gland responsible for the adaptation of the brain. Addictive substances that affect the dopamine level in the brain deprive sleep.

An increase in dopamine production affects a person’s sleep at any time of the day. If you’re dealing with sleeplessness, it may be because of stress. Find ways to relax, learn to love, and create time for family and friends. Having a good laugh is also a good thing. 

8. Dopamine Affects Mood And Emotions

Dopamine is a neurotransmitter that conveys signals between neurons. It controls not only our mental and emotional responses but motor reactions. Dopamine’s other name is the “happy hormone.” It leads to our experience of happiness.

Dopamine alone may not cause depression, but a low level may cause some symptoms that are similar. If you’re feeling moody, get some dopamine into your life. Exercise and food can help. 

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9. Food Gives You A Dopamine Boost

There are foods besides sugar and fatty meals that can boost the dopamine level. Food like nuts, cheese, and chicken that have L-phenylalanine and L-tyrosine promote dopamine. The body can convert most of them into dopamine.

Also, food with a high sugar level raises the dopamine level for a while. Cuisine rich in protein is containing amino acids the body needs to produce dopamine. Healthy fats like unsaturated (polyunsaturated and monounsaturated) fats help balance dopamine.

10. Dopamine and Learning

Dopamine can motivate learning and cause the rise of attention among learners. People learning addiction may have high levels of the substance in their bodies. Positive words spoken to a person can trigger dopamine effects and increase a person’s willingness to learn.

Dopamine is also responsible for retention. And it triggers the brain to remember activities, speeches, and actions. The best way to trigger dopamine to increase a person’s willingness to learn is through encouragement. People respond well to positive remarks and feedback, peer acceptance, and recognition.

Photo by Gabrielle Henderson on Unsplash

By Sara Leandro

Sara Leandro is a certified health coach who helps others feel their best through individualized lifestyle changes that meet their unique needs and health goals.


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