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Novel Treatment Strategies Could Help Combat the Opioid Crisis

October 09, 2019 / Technology Networks

Concerns over the opioid epidemic have sparked a strong scientific interest in why some people become addicted while others don’t. Now, researchers are proposing novel treatment strategies that could help prevent abuse of opioids and other substances. scientists in health behavior, neuroscience, pain management and addiction describe advances in brain science that can explain an individual’s vulnerability to substance abuse and dependency. Those discoveries hold implications for the opioid crisis in the United States and beyond, the authors say. “Addiction is a disease of decision-making; the majority of people have intact brain mechanisms of decision-making that keep them resilient to succumbing to an addiction,” says Antoine Bechara, lead author on the report and a psychological scientist at the University of Southern California. “But a small percentage have a weakness in this mechanism and they are rendered more vulnerable.