Anhedonia

In the simplest of terms, anhedonia is the inability to experience pleasure while participating in pleasurable activities. Some doctors will describe hedonic capacity as the total amount of pleasure that someone is able to gain from a single activity. People who experience anhedonia will often describe themselves as not having the desire or motivation to do anything. Studies suggest that there is a link between individuals who experience anhedonia and the concept of reward. Because of the fact that they cannot see the reward at the end of the road, they lack to motivation to get there. Often without conscious input, our brain is constantly making choices regarding risk, reward, payoff, etc. If the brain does not see the reward or payoff, it will not want to move forward with a risk or participating in goal-directed behavior. There are three dissociable psychological components of reward: liking (hedonic impact, the pleasure derived from consuming a reward), wanting (incentive salience, a type of incentive motivation that promotes approach toward and consumption of rewards), and learning (predictive associations and cognitions). Learning has also been proposed as an independent facet of reward that may be impaired in conditions associated with anhedonia.

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