Dopamine detox: It will change your life

Merve Yılmaz
4 min readAug 2, 2022


If you can’t read even for 5 minutes or study and think you have a distraction this post for you.

Photo by Roger Bradshaw on Unsplash

If you clicked this post it is possible that you are having trouble focusing on things that you used to do easily. You may not be able to read a book for a few minutes without getting bored. You may find that you’re easily distracted. But if you can spend hours on social media and video games without being distracted, your dopamine hormone system may be damaged.

Dopamine is an important hormone secreted by the brain when we attain some goal. It can be as minor as drinking water, or as important as getting accepted to a desired university. Of course there is difference between different situations. It is secreted in different quantities for different events.

When we start studying, the hormone dopamine is secreted at first, but decreases over time. Meanwhile, social media algorithms constantly create new content, making us feel good all the time. We run this system down by spending too much time on social media. When we don’t get an award right away, we can’t go on anymore. Instead we return to social platforms and the cycle of dopamine rewards.

To understand the hormone dopamine, an experiment was conducted on mice who were provided with a button that released dopamine into their brains. The mice lost their desire for food, water, and sex, and instead repeatedly pressed the button. Don’t you think this is similar to someone who spends every hour of the day gaming or
swiping through Instagram?

When we cause our brain to release so much dopamine, the brain tries to balance it in 2 ways:

1-Decreases dopamine production

2- Dopamine cannot reach its target.

When we are exposed to too many instant pleasures, it is no longer enough. We will want more and pleasures of different kinds. It is the same with the drugs and alcohol. Initially, a beer will get you drunk, after a while that number may be 3–4.

There is always something new on social media. These platforms are constantly being updated to renew our interest. When we are conditioned by social media, we are no longer able to read a single page of a book.

I am experiencing the same thing. I used to be able to finish a book in a day or work longer hours without distraction. But now, I spend too much time on Instagram. I spend almost 2 hours on social media every day. I know this needs to change. I want to get more out of my life. This is one of the reasons why I started the 50-day challenge.

I have compiled three different methods recommended for those who have dopamine problems. Here are these recommendations:

1.One-day dopamine detox

The first option is to get away for one day from everything that gives you pleasure. Social media, gaming, music, junk food, fast food, smoking, alcohol, having fun with your friends. Get away from it all for a day.

Some may seem pointless to you, like hanging out with friends or listening to music. However, our minds have been polluted for a long time. We can be refreshed by getting away from everything that gives us pleasure for one day.

2. One week dopamine detox by selecting

This option is done by choosing one of more things that you need to get away from. Social media, gaming, music, junk food, fast food, smoking, alcohol, having fun with your friends. For example you can try not using instagram and twitter for a week. This is a tactic I use from time to time.

3.One week all together

It’s about making a one day solid detox a week. This program is the hardest. So if you want to start dopamine detox I recommend first or second options. You can push yourself with time.

While you’re doing a dopamine detox, you can go for a walk, you can read, and if you’re religious you can take your time to pray. There are a lot of other options. One thing certain: if you want to succeed in your life you have to get away from things that give immediate pleasure. Success is the priceless pleasure that comes after long hard work.

This is my seventh day for the 50-day challenge. I keep working to achieve my goals. For now, everything is fine. I will tick one more goal after I publish my article.

Thank you so much for taking the time to read my post. If you want to support me on this journey, you can follow me.

Thanks Max Schmeder for correcting my typos and grammar errors.



Merve Yılmaz

• UX Designer •Istanbul Technical University •Top writer in Self Improvement, Health, Life Lessons & Life.