Dopamine, C8H11NO2, is a neurotransmitter that plays a key role in the brain's reward system1. Dopamine has many functions in the brain, including that of memory, muscle coordination and more importantly our reward system.
We experience feelings of pleasure, motivation and satisfaction when our brains produce dopamine.
Although dopamine is crucial to our brain health, excessive levels of dopamine can lead tobursts of impulsivity and addictive be haviours. When we over engage inactivities, such as mindlessly scrolling social media, gaming or even gambling, our reward systems are being stimulated on repeat –the desire to keep that dopamine high becomes an intrinsic motivation to continue negative and potentially harmful behaviours2.
This is where dopamine detox comes in – we remove the trigger, and take back control of our life.
Dopamine detox3, is a conscious and intentional restrictive intervention, developed to tackle behavioural addictions. It involves taking a break from activities which spike dopamine levels in the brain, such as social media, video games, and fast food.
Dopamine detox, is based on Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT)4, using a technique called stimulus control5. By distancing ourselves from the stimulus or triggers, i.e. the source of our addictive behaviours, and developing coping mechanisms in scenarios in which we are exposed to these triggers.
When done correctly with guidance, dopamine detox helps us relearn how to enjoy pleasurable activities with intention, in a moderate and balanced way.
Most of us are somewhat addicted to our smartphones. We use them to work, study, track our fitness journey, look up directions, Google orWikipedia, and more importantly to stay connected. Our phones, and on it the social media apps, can be constant gateways for us to hit that dopamine high. (They are designed to do so!)
Your brain might thank you for trying out a digital dopamine or social media detox!
During a digital dopamine detox, our aim is to learn to construct healthier digital use and smartphone habits. A quantifiable result isto track the change in our smartphone screen time.
For those who don’t have the luxury to expend time on doing yoga everyday, we recommend trying out Waitasec. Waitasec is our behavioural science backed smartphone application, which nudges you to spend time away from addictive social media applications.
If you're interested in incorporating digital dopamine detox into your life, here are some tips to get started using Waitasec:
Waitasec is working on providing you with a personalised plan on your digital wellness journey, join our Beta Program to find out more!
There are several benefits to incorporating dopamine detoxinto your digital wellness journey. By reducing the amount of dopamine thatyour brain is exposed to on a regular basis, you can:
When done right, digital dopamine or social media detox is beneficial to us in a number of ways. It can help us be intentional with our time, prevent addictive be haviours and learn to find pleasure in a healthier manner. Remember to start small, set boundaries, find alternatives, be mindful, and experiment until you find what works best for you.
Start today on your digital wellness journey with Waitasec. We will accompany you with tips and tricks to building better habits!