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What Does Gambling do to Your Brain?

According to research conducted in the USA, close to 80% of the respondents said that they have gambled at least once during their lifetime. And the commonest reason for gambling, aside from winning money, of course, is the thrill and pleasure that it gives. So how does gambling give thrill and pleasure? What does gambling do to your brain?

It is very interesting, indeed. Read on.

What does gambling do to your brain?

The answer to this lies with a hormone, called dopamine, released by the brain, during gambling. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter or a messenger that triggers a feeling of pleasure. Studies have shown increased levels of dopamine in people who suffer some sort of addiction.

Gambling too triggers a release of dopamine from the brain, which gives the feeling of pleasure to players. Over a period of time, your body builds `tolerance´ to this level of dopamine, and it craves for even higher levels. This can cause you to take even bigger risks while gambling, which, over a period of time, can lead to gambling addiction. There is a reason that sites like 10Cric, 22Bet, and Betway make millions of dollars every year!

Researchers have found significant activities in two particular areas of the brain, while a person is gambling. These areas are the prefrontal cortex and the ventral striatum. The prefrontal cortex is located in the front part of your brain and is associated with planning the future and setting up goals. In the case of gambling, it is trying to determine the consequences of your actions.

The ventral striatum is located deeper in the brain and is a part associated with emotions and rewards. The blood flow to both these areas increases considerably while a person is gambling.


What does gambling do to your brain? Over time, gambling triggers a similar response in a body, that is observed in substance abusers. The dopamine, which initially gives you pleasure and thrill, makes gambling more and more addictive, and in the long run, can cause great distress in a person’s financial as well as social and personal life.


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