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Motherhood may offer protection against certain drug addictions.

Motherhood can change a woman's life in countless ways, in many cases it provides, joy, contentment, love, and a fair amount of stress.  But it seems that in addition to these aspects, motherhood may also be able to offer protection against certain drug addictions.

Recent research has found that in rats who have procreated, their pleasure response to cocaine was much lower than in those who had never given birth (Science Daily, 2012).  This has led researchers to question whether certain hormones, or other chemical changes during pregnancy, may offer some protection against drug addiction. 

It seems that in the rats who have had offspring, they released less dopamine when administered with cocaine, than those rats who have never given birth.  Dopamine is well known to be a big factor in many drug addiction, as it helps cause the 'high' from drug use, and if pregnancy is able to reduce the levels of dopamine released when drugs are used, this could have implications for future treatment options.  The researchers suggest that it may be due to the chemical changes that occur during pregnancy, and that these changes offer a 'buffer' to protect against the pleasure effects of drugs.  They therefore suggest that further testing is needed to understand what, if any, hormone may be responsible for this change, and how they can utilise it in the treatment and prevention or drug addiction.  If future research yields positive results, it could mean increasing numbers of people are successful at drug rehab.



Science Daily.  (2012).  Does motherhood dampen cocaine's effects?  Sourced from:

Published by on 31/10/2020.

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