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The action of cocaine in the nucleus accumbens will trigger more impulses to leave them hence activating the reward system. The continued use of the drug will lead to addiction and the will heavily depend on the drug to sustain rewarding feeling. A serious implication will be the lack of the person to derive the feeling of positive reinforcement or get pleasure from natural rewards such as water, sex and food (Kornetsky & Porrino, 1992. Other than activation of the reward in the brain, there are a number of other effects of cocaine in the brain. This situation is very similar that one witnessed when heroin is administered. A person who uses it will also get addicted and fail to get nay pleasure from natural forms of reward.
Recent technologies in the study of the brain have allowed scientists to establish how cocaine normally affects human brain. The brain consumes glucose by providing it to every neuron to carry out its function. However, the presence of cocaine in the brain hampers with the manner in which it utilizes the glucose (Olds & Milner, 2007). This is a fact that scientists have established by use of PET scan. Cocaine will incapacitate the brain from effectively using the glucose hence reducing metabolic activities in many parts of the brain. Persistent use of cocaine will enhance the decrease in the ability of neurons to utilize energy (glucose) and in the long run disrupt many functions of the brain.
To some up the whole discussion about the effects of cocaine and heroine on human brain, increase the rate of response for rewarding intracranial stimulation. This means that there is increased value of reward in intracranial stimulation. As a result there changes in the brain functioning that in the end affects the health of the individual who uses the drugs. Both cocaine and heroin are quite addictive because they make those who use them feel good (Wise, 2006). Upon injection or administering of both drugs, they run direct to the brain, concentrating n different areas including VTA, caudate and in case of heroine, it moves to additional area, the thalamus, hence activating the path ways. Cocaine binds to the uptake pump hence inhibiting them from elimination of dopamine from synapse. This leads top accumulation of dopamine in the synapse which increases activates more dopamine receptors. There are similarities in the way heroin act but the process is quite complex due to involvement of more than two neurons. These drugs will also make those who heavily depend on them acquire some unwanted behavior.