Benefits Dopamine Detox Presents to Students

Resetting the activities that release dopamine helps teenagers’ wellbeing

Benefits Dopamine Detox Presents to Students

With the anxieties of today, dopamine releases are easier to achieve through new recreational hobbies, which do not provide pleasure that is long-term. The short-term dopamine releases include technology and avoidance of responsibilities. Especially in teenagers, these activities can ease the stress of school, work or other difficult tasks. A detox of dopamine is helpful in rediscovering activities that can create natural and healthy dopamine releases for long-lasting happiness. 

Dopamine detox—also known as dopamine fasting—is a term that refers to the reset of bad habits or toxic pleasures that release dopamine. The goal of the detox is to teach the body to learn to release dopamine in a natural and healthy way. The dopamine detox positively affects motivation levels, sleep, moods, attention levels and one’s capacity to learn. 

The creator of the dopamine detox, Dr. Cameron Sepah, is an Assistant Clinical Professor at University of California, San Francisco, in the Department of Psychiatry. Sepah’s goal with the dopamine detox was to rid people of destructive activities they have become dependent on to release dopamine. The major destructive habits are the use of technology, drugs and alcohol, which greatly affect the release of dopamine in a healthy manner. Though confusing in the title, dopamine detoxing is not the act of fasting from dopamine but from negative behaviors affecting dopamine. 

“Dopamine Fasting 2.0 is an evidence-based technique to manage addictive behaviors, by restricting them to specific periods of time, and practicing fasting from impulsively engaging in them, in order to regain behavioral flexibility,” said Sepah in “The Definitive Guide to Dopamine Fasting 2.0: The Hot Silicon Valley Trend.”

People of any age can participate in a dopamine detox because destructive behavior, like technology, affects people at any age, especially teenagers. Technology usage affects what instigates the brain to release dopamine, therefore influencing the brain’s ability to release dopamine for healthy and beneficial habits. In avoiding disadvantageous tendencies productivity and the ability to succeed in school, work and life can be increased.

There are a multitude of reasons why people should participate in a dopamine detox. Some unhealthy and harmful habits are being antisocial or lonely, excessive eating, gambling, technology use or shopping. Others are a constant search for thrill, pleasure or originality. The use of drugs or alcohol are significantly harmful and unhealthy habits as well. A dopamine detox has the ability to either avoid mental illnesses or aid in stopping such illnesses from worsening, with the most significant being depression. In fact, the dopamine fast aids in stress relief, lower blood pressure and improved sleep. 

Some helpful activities to be the most successful in the dopamine detox are being more social, decreasing screen time and cooking nutritious meals. For more leisurely activities, reading books, exercising, creating a routine and improving sleep schedules can help in the dopamine detox process. For the brain to have gone through a full reset, the dopamine detox should last three months. However, for success that is long-lasting, one should maintain such habits learned while doing the dopamine fast. 

An important part of the dopamine detox is self-realization. Recognizing impulsive behaviors and bad habits, along with engaging in internal betterment—whether mental or physical—are the largest parts of the dopamine detox. All of the other ways to detox are mere aids in the process of resetting dopamine levels. 

In actuality, the dopamine detox can be whatever the participant would like it to be. Anything that can counter the addictive behaviors of today’s society can act as a way to better oneself. As the dopamine detox is so vague in its true path to success, it can be personalized to the needs of anyone who would like to try their own type of dopamine fast.