How do drugs work in the brain to produce pleasure?

All drugs of abuse directly or indirectly target the brain’s reward system by flooding the circuit with dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter present in regions of the brain that regulate movement, emotion, cognition, motivation, and feelings of pleasure. The overstimulation of this system, which rewards our natural, life-sustaining behaviors, produces the euphoric effects sought by people who abuse drugs and teaches them to repeat the behavior.

image of pills Privilege, Pressure & Pills
I never would have imagined motivated, bright students, with everything going for them, turning to drug use.
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