Substance abuse can have dramatic consequences on the brain and behavior. The traditional way of preventing drug abuse is often education. Awareness programs do work with people who can picture long-term repercussions of abusing drugs. Other people, most often those vulnerable to addictions, do not benefit from such programs. It seems that they tend to devalue both rewards and punishments that will happen in the future, a behavior known as delay discounting. This leads them to opt for immediate rewards, such as those provided by drugs, and ignore future consequences.
Would it be possible then to train the brain of these people so that they show less delay discounting? Would that help them stay away from addictive substances? [Read more…] about Brain Training as a New Treatment for Addictions