Netflix and Neurotransmitters

Wednesday January 24th, 2018

Have you ever anxiously awaited a new season of your favourite t.v. show to be released on Netflix, only to find yourself watching every episode in next to no time? If you have, you’re not alone. Erin Dwyer, the media relations manager for Netflix, stated that, “on average, most of our members are finishing a season in a week.”

In 2015, the term “binge-watch” was awarded the Word of the Year by Collins Dictionary. Collins defines this term as “watch[ing] a large number of television programs (especially all the shows from one series) in succession”.

Let’s switch gears for a moment and dive into a mini biology lesson. Our brains release a neurotransmitter called dopamine when we experience something that is enjoyable. Large amounts of dopamine fire through our brains when we’re watching our favourite shows. When we feel good, we want to continue seeking out whatever makes us feel good. However, just because something is pleasurable, doesn’t necessarily mean it’s in our best interest. As a matter of fact, binge-watching can actually have negative effects on our health and our brains. For example, many individuals experience sadness and/or a sense of loss after they finish a show they’ve enjoyed.

Our centre’s desire is to see individuals living from a place of wholeness and well-being. Whether we’re faced with how much television to watch or how to make sexually responsible decisions, our choices impact our health. Take time and take care to choose what is best for you physically, emotionally, and spiritually.