Have you ever woken up in the morning and you felt so down that life is not worthwhile? This could be a sign that you are low on dopamine, a brain chemical that can make you feel motivated.
If you’re suffering from dopamine deficiency and you don’t know it, this can be very disruptive. Understanding the importance of this chemical in the brain can help you control it rather than letting it control you.
What Exactly is Dopamine?
Dopamine is just like other feel-good neurotransmitters, including oxytocin, endorphins, and serotonin. It has a lot of functions, but it is primarily recognized as the motivation molecule because it can provide us with the drive and the will to become productive.
Some experts call it the reward chemical because the same chemical is in control of the pleasure-reward system of the brain. Dopamine also affects our mood, learning, concentration abilities, motor control, and sleep.
How Do You Know You’re Low on Dopamine?
There are symptoms that you need to know about dopamine deficiency, including:
- You’re feeling very low
- Life doesn’t interest you, along with the activities you used to enjoy
- You’re feeling apathetic
- You feel hopeless and as if there is no reason to be happy
- You find it difficult to begin doing things and it’s even harder to finish them
Other common symptoms include:
- Mood swings
- Lack of motivation
- Inability to feel pleasure
- Low libido
- Caffeine and sugar cravings
- Inability to lose weight
- Inability to cope with stress
People who are low on dopamine also become unable to communicate and socialize with other people.
Why You Should Be Concerned
Many people leave their dopamine deficiency undiagnosed, but this should not happen. Dopamine, when out of balance, can affect mental health and can be the cause of other systemic disorders. Problems, such as depression and addiction to substances or vices may arise. People with ADHD also have low dopamine levels. Other health problems include chronic fatigue syndrome and fibromyalgia.
But dopamine deficiency can be solved. Our modern lifestyle though doesn’t give us the same methods of increasing dopamine levels like our ancestors, such as when they hunt for their dinner. Nevertheless, you can combat dopamine deficiency through various methods like watching or playing sports, reading a book and finishing it, completing any project, and accomplishing something at work. Some foods also help boost the chemicals in your brain. When you get that “Yes, I did it” feeling, this will increase your dopamine to healthy levels.