Brain Awareness Video Contest: Fight or Flight Response – Sympathetic Nervous System

Brain Awareness Video Contest: Fight or Flight Response – Sympathetic Nervous System


I practiced that piece for hours a day
But when i went on stage
my palms started sweating
my heart started pounding very fast
i got light headed
and my eyes got tunnel vision
whats wrong with me and what is the phenomenon that causes this?!
(title music)
(Leopard growling in background – fight)
(Lion growling near by – Run)
Have you ever wondered
How humans received this
fight or flight response?
well, to determine this
we have to go back
thousands even
may be hundreds of thousands of years back
original distance ancestors
these may have been homoerectius
neanderthal
what we colloquially know as caveman
these cavemen
lived in the natural environment
in caves, under trees
and they went out to hunt animals
gather berries and other things to eat
in these times
humans faced the eminent danger of
having to face against predators
whether they were lions, tigers, bears, wolves
you get the deal
so humans that were able to
have a quick response
contacted with these predators
were able to survive against these threats
humans without these mutation
were not able to
and were not able to survive and reproduce
their own genes
this is the basic theory of evolution
so humans that were more successful in wading predators
had this fight or flight response
and hence as humans have progressed
through out the decade
centuries and eras
we have kept this *fight or flight* response
which has helped human
survive and thrive to be the prominent species today
so now we are going to get
deep into the Anatomy of Nervous System
the autonomic nervous system is one of the two main parts
of the peripheral nervous system which forms
all the neurons and parts of nervous system
outside the main brain and spinal cord
the two divisions of this autonomic nervous system
are the sympathetic and parasympathetic division
the sympathetic division deals with the fight or flight response
while the parasympathetic deals with the rest and digest
such as breathing, digestion of food, and other function
when free nerve endings or receptors
on one’s skin
detects stimuli
whether through temperature, movement or pressure
the change in the electrical voltage
of the neuron which the pre-nerve ending is part of
triggers a message to be sent
to the spinal cord
from the spinal cord and the ganglion near it
it is sent to the brain
mainly to the amygdala and hippocampus
for the sympathetic fight or flight response
where it is processed
and then sent down
back down through the brain stem and spinal cord
to corresponding segment of the spinal cord
for example the
fifth cervical segment
would deals with a particular muscle
or part of the human body
the first thoracic segment
deals with the dilation of pupil
and the first lumber segment deals with
the bladder
and secretion of epinephrine and norepinephrine
so now this is
the main anatomy behind this process
the information from CNS after it is processed by the brain
is sent from the spinal cord to preganglionic neurons
for the sympathetic nervous system
these are myelinated
which means the impulses travel faster
from the ganglion they are sent to
unmyelinated post ganglioninc neuron which are long
and then which triggers various functions
for example release of the epinephrine
triggering the increase of the heart rate
leading to increased oxygen circulation throughout the body
and ultimately the human is able to
perform the fight or flight response
running away from danger for example
ultimately the fight or flight response
needed by the sympathetic nervous system
is unquestionably complex
and interesting
it has an undoubtable and profound impact
on modern life
in the modern pressures and
stresses that we face today.
just remember…don’t let these stresses get to the best of you
and if you are ever chased by a tiger and managed to escape it is this system that you have to thank!

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