Pleasure Unwoven By Dr. Kevin McCauley

899 words | 3 page(s)

The outcome of human interaction is the byproduct of behavioral exchanges between two or more individuals. On the other hand, behavior refers to the totality of reactionary cues expressed by a person towards the environmental stimuli that they receive. Where such behavioral cues are skewed, the outcome of the interaction is negative. There are many factors that hinder effective interaction and addiction is one of them. Addiction is the overreliance on a stimulant to achieve a given satisfaction. Different individuals are addicted to different stimulants as a result of psychological and emotional incompetency. The argument concerning whether addiction is a disease or a choice affects how individuals deal with recovery. In his film “Pleasure Unwoven”, Dr. Kevin McCauley offers his opinion on the subject. This essay seeks to offer an analytical review of the film and a personal opinion on the issue of addition as a disease.

Film Review
The video was insightful and offered valuable information, which helped to understand why addiction is considered a disease rather than a choice. Despite the reliance on comical representations of arguments, the gravity of the subject matter, from a personal perspective was higher than the entertainment value. The video created a feeling of awareness and enlightenment, while eliminating the impact of knowledge gain barriers. However, given the McCauley’s inferences on the impact of lack of knowledge on addiction as a disease on patients suffering with addiction, it became increasingly difficult to realize the entertainment value. Dr. McCauley’s approach to information dissemination was to use literary styles and devices to achieve understanding on the part of the viewer. However, the subject matter, and the representational style portrayed how sinister the issue was and hence helped in creating empathy towards sufferers of addiction. It became clearly apparent and understood that addiction is a psychological disease which manifests as psychological and behavioral outputs.

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Personal Opinion on the Issue
In concurrence with the opinion of Dr. McCauley, the personal opinion is that addiction is a neurological disorder whose symptoms manifest as psychological and behavioral disorders. Following from psychological knowledge, most behavioral disorders are usually as a result of ineffective neurological development. Psychological manifestations are as a result of chemical and neurological processes that occur in the brain matter. As such, where such processes are inhibited due to the ineffective development of brain matter, the patient would exhibit different psychological and behavioral disorders such as addiction. In opposing the choice argument, which has been a personal challenge through experience, despite addiction being a choice, the choices stem from neurological processes. As such, where the neurological processes are impaired and ineffective, the individual would in turn make an erroneous choice. As such, McCauley’s argument against the argument of addiction as a choice is founded on scientific research and biological sciences.

Dr. McCauley also discusses the issue of stress and addiction which is also agreeable to personal perceptions. Most substance addicts and addicts of other kinds often have a secondary disorder which prompts them towards addiction. The film presents the concept of dopamine and addiction arguing, with support, that addiction is as a result of impaired decision-making processes where the brain releases dopamine to promote a particular behavior. Stress usually occurs where an individual receives outcomes that are worse than expected. This is similar to Dr. McCauley’s discussion on disappointment. As such, the neurological processes shall identify ways in which the higher dopamine production is achieved as opposed to the lower dopamine production. So, in cases of stress, the brain would present a want for the dopamine releasing substance to counter the low dopamine release occasioned by the disappointing or stressful situation.

Another piece of information that was interesting and insightful was the influence of genetics on addiction. Dr. McCauley offers that some brains are more resilient to addiction than others are and hence there are others who can easily become addicted while others cannot. The genetic argument offers insight into the psychological problems that are passed from parent to child based on resilience. The information offered by Dr. McCauley regarding how resilience and proneness to addiction is passed on from parent to child helps in understanding why some members in the society are easily addicted to substances while others are not. This helps individuals in recovery to understand why the recovery process can take longer than usual, and removes blame from the patient since they do not have control over their actions. Based on this, the family and society can be more understanding of the recovery process and reduce victim blaming.

It is evident that the argument for and against addiction as a disease stems from the lack of awareness of the neurological processes that influence psychology and behavioral annotations. Understanding how chemical processes influence everyday decision can help in the determination of interventions against addiction. Another insight developed from the video is that, addiction as a disease is only recognizable where the outcome is visibly negative. As such, there are other individuals who may be addicted to other dopamine releasing activities and substances, which may not be harmful to their physiological wellbeing, but may affect other aspects of their lives. For instance, following on the same process, a person whose dopamine is released by profits may be negatively affected by an investment addiction where such addiction starts to interfere with their important life elements and activities such as sleep and food.

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