Naturally Increase Dopamine and Serotonin Depleted by Opioid Abuse
If you have abused opiates for more than a few weeks, your brain in more than likely depleted of its natural feel good chemicals. Your body and brain naturally create chemicals called neurotransmitters. Your brain’s four primary neurotransmitters are dopamine, serotonin, GABA, acetylcholine. Your body also produces chemicals called endorphins, which are the bodies own opiates and they are released under extreme pain. Below are the primary functions of your brain’s neurotransmitters.
- Serotonin regulates sleep and appetite
- Dopamine is the feel good chemical, plays an important role in mood, energy, attitude, motivation.
- GABA acts as your calming neurotransmitter, helping you relax
- Acetylcholine for processing information and memory
MUSIC – Music is powerful and can move you emotionally. When you’re coming off opiates you’re body probably feels like it’s thawing out. Your body is probably more sensitive to touch and sound. Good music can absolutely help your mood and get those brain chemicals working again. Try and listen to mostly upbeat music.
MEDITATION – Meditation helps the nervous system operate at its best; when done properly this produces optimum levels of serotonin and endorphins. If you’re interested in learning meditation without all the hard work, check out Holosync.
LAUGHTER – Watch a good comedy movie or have a laugh with friends to release endorphins.
SUNLIGHT – bright light increases the production of Serotonin in the body. Spending time in the sunlight can absolutely improve your mood and also soothe muscle aches. Tanning beds can be helpful if no sun is shining.
SEX – sex is a powerful producer of endorphins. A long session can dramatically increase endorphins. When you’re in withdrawal sex can be a very nice escape.
ACUPUNCTURE – acupuncture increases circulation and stimulates the release of endorphins. If you haven’t looked into acupuncture while in withdrawal – you might want to try it out, it can be VERY helpful during healing.
MASSAGE – massage stimulates the release of endorphins. Massaging your own scalp and shower massager’s can provide an affordable alternative to expensive treatments. Massage therapy can feel wonderful.
HERBS/SUPPLEMENTS – St John’s Wort, 5-HTP and L Tyrosine all can increase serotonin and dopamine in the brain, thus easing withdrawal symptoms and shortening withdrawal duration.
EXERCISE – exercise is one of the best natural ways to produce serotonin, dopamine and endorphins. Vigorous exercise is best because the stronger the physical demand you place on your body, the greater the release of endorphins. You should try weight training and high and low intensity exercises. Work out as long as you can.
You can also increase serotonin by eating the right foods, including:
- Eat sweet foods like chocolate, only a couple squares of good quality chocolate with a high percentage of Cocoa in it can raise these chemicals.
- Serotonin is naturally occurring in foods like pineapples, bananas, nuts and plums.
- Get an adequate supply of B vitamins, folic acid and vitamin C because these vitamins play a role in transmitting brain chemicals.
- Spicy foods like chili peppers and jalapenos. The heat triggers the release of endorphins, so the spicier the better.
Improving serotonin, dopamine and endorphins levels are important for shortening and recovering quickly from opioid withdrawal symptoms. So remember laughing, eating chocolate, or getting a massage can release feel good brain chemicals and help you feel better, faster. Be sure to add these activities to your withdrawal recovery game plan.