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Ada
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Time and Dopamine

Permanent Linkby Ada on Tue Nov 12, 2013 7:47 pm

In my posts "Wibbly wobbly timey wimey stuff" :mrgreen: and "More thoughts on time" I wrote about how my experience of time changed RADICALLY sometimes when I took NAC to stop daydreaming. And I mentioned a book by Claudia Hammond called "Time Warped" in relation to time perception.

Then I got this book from the library. And read it. And it is a very good read. Highly recommended to people who like friendly science writing on an interesting subject. It also contained this-

"The whole dopamine system appears to be crucial in the perception of time. If you give someone the drug haloperidol, often prescribed for schizophrenia, it blocks the receptors for dopamine and causes people to underestimate the amount of time that's passed, while the recreational drugs methamphetamines (or speed) do the opposite; they increase the levels of dopamine circulating in the brain, which causes the brain's clock to speed up with the result that people then overestimate the amount of time that has passed."

Low dopamine. Under estimate. 1 hour real time feels like 3 hours passing. See also Depression.
High dopamine. Over estimate. 3 hours real time feels like 1 hour passing.

The low dopamine effect seems to be what I'm feeling. EXCEPT that I also have focus and motivation during this time. Which are more indicative of high dopamine. And were really nice! Amphetamines are not a healthy long term way to explore this. NAC only has an intermittent effect. I went looking for other ways to boost dopamine. Number one method? Increase the tyrosine in your diet. Tyrosine, that lovely amino acid which is daily stopping me from frequent suicidal thoughts.

All this is to say, I have no idea what my brain chemistry is up to. But it's clearly up to something. I don't know which is the cart and which is the horse. Has the abuse of my brain by daydreaming for decades caused a dopamine issue? Is there another imbalance and it's hitting dopamine is a side effect? Is it unrelated and just working off similar chemical antecedents? Or is there a regular biochemical cause for some of this. I'm cautious about experimenting. Since one way that NAC could "stop working" is through down regulating receptors in the brain. And that doesn't seem healthy either. Back to reading and trying to put together a theory. Frustrating and fascinating.

We think too much and feel too little.
 More than machinery, we need humanity.
 More than cleverness, we need kindness and gentleness.


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Comments

Re: Time and Dopamine

Permanent Linkby SocialPhobic on Fri May 02, 2014 2:40 am

Hi Ada

I think you may have things back to front.

If low dopamine causes an under estimate of time then that would mean that a persons estimate of time would be under the real amount of time passed. That would mean that three hours of real time may feel like only one hour to someone with low dopamine.

If high dopamine causes an over estimate of time then that would mean that a persons estimate of time would be over the real amount of time passed. That would mean that one hour of real time may feel like three hours to someone with high dopamine.

This would mean that your focus and motivation would fit perfectly as you would have high dopamine and your estimates of time would be overestimates such as one hour of real time would feel like somewhere over one hour.

I'm sure this is correct or I may be crazier than I suspect.

Take care and best wishes
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Re: Time and Dopamine

Permanent Linkby DT1095 on Sat Dec 26, 2015 5:24 pm

Thats quite interesting and may answer a thing that used to bother me with my uBPD exgf. Every time I went out to get or do something I came back and she acted as if I had been gone for hours. I couldn't understand how she couldn't see that it took x to get to where I had to then y to do what was needed and x to get back. If her body clock meant that time felt as if it was going faster then that would explain it.
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