About Punding, Also Known As Tweaking As A Destructive Behavior

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What Is Punding, Also Known As Tweaking What exactly is this phenomenon called Punding or Tweeking? Well, unless you're "in the circle," you probably never heard of these words when used in the realm of drugs and substance abuse. You're not alone. So let's begin by defining what these words mean. Punding is a behavior, and is commonly noted as one that consists of performing a useless task compulsively over and over. Tweaking is essentially synonymous to "punding."

Now, let's put that into terms that relate to substance abuse. One of the most highly used substances in American Indian reservations is crystal meth. Not only does it block the uptake and increase the release of dopamine, it mimics a neurotransmitter at receptor sites, causing serious consequence to the sympathetic nervous system. The result can be a remarkable increase in the aggressive, sexual, social, and defensive behaviors of users. Many crystal meth addicts exhibit extreme paranoia and schizophrenia.

The term "punding" was first used in the context of meth users by a researcher named E. Rylander in the 1960's. In his reports, he noted that crystal meth users were aware of their punding, but unable to stop it.
So the question that follows, logically, is: if people see others using meth, and observe the repetitive behaviors known as punding, and see the paranoia and schizoid behaviors, why do they use it themselves? And if they try it once or twice and experience these effects, why do they continue to use it?

The Brain Reward System is one explanation. Without some reward, the behaviors would cease. But the reward is clear. A level of euphoria encourages the continuation of the behaviors, but the diminution of the euphoria brings upon the user a different and common response: they want more. What is not widely recognized is that the substance abuser will enjoy the high, but they also enjoy the low, and then getting to the high again. And it keeps repeating, until they have no choice. They are now addicted.

A common excuse for using is that it doesn't affect everyone the same way, and the age-old belief that "I'm sure I won't become an addict because I can stop anytime I want to." Sadly, it almost never happens that way. Once the pleasure center of your brain gets what it wants, it just wants more. And the more it gets, the more it wants. In order to break the cycle, you must withdraw from the source of the pleasure, the drug. And when you are clear of it, your brain still wants more. What changes is that your body may not crave it as badly. And so begins the cycle of relapse and recovery.

Punding is a behavior that we should all take note of. It's an indication that there is more than meets the eye. When you see the repetitive, meaningless behaviors known as punding, don't dismiss it. Look deeper, and you may discover the problem you've had all along with your loved one.

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