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Canada (509,862)
Psychology (7,783)
PSYB65H3 (519)
Ted Petit (310)
Lecture 8

PSYB65- Lecture 8.docx

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Department
Psychology
Course
PSYB65H3
Professor
Ted Petit
Semester
Fall

Description
PSYB65- Lecture 8  CNS depressants are broken down into three categories- barbiturates, non-barbiturates, alcohol  Barbiturates are generally lower brain excitability; GABBA are one of the transmitter substances/systems, and are the primary inhibitory transmitter inside of the CNS of humans; and barbiturates stimulate/activate these GABBA receptors; barbiturates are synergistic with most other depressants; combination of barbiturates and alcohol can be extremely deadly (Marilyn Monroe); primarily used as sedatives to put people to asleep (particularly for older patients); also used to treat epilepsy; also used as an antianxiety; the problem with using it in sleep is that people spend less time in REM sleep, so it is not quality sleep; since it is a depressant, whenever you come off it, there is an over activation of the CNS and that can be life threatening (convulsions, seizures upon withdrawal); since it is synergistic, you can give them alcohol when trying to prevent withdrawal symptoms  Alcohol is derived by yeast, digesting sugar, and secreting alcohol; accounts for the largest admission into mental hospitals, 20-40% of all beds in psychiatric hospitals are taken up by alcoholics; 55% of all arrests, the person was impaired; in terms of homicide, 50-75% of all murderers the person was drinking; 50% of all driver’s deaths, one of the drivers was impaired; 20-30% of people who commit suicide were impaired; the U.S. had a prohibition in alcohol from 1920-1933, but not so in Canada which lead to illegal alcohol smuggling; initially, all of the horrible numbers began to drop, but by 1930, all of the numbers had come back to exactly where they were pre-prohibition; actually, in addition, they had a whole bunch of other problems that they did not previously have; alcohol we drink is ethanol, but if not made properly it can have methanol (can cause blindness); alcohol is absorbed directly through the stomach wall, making it the fastest source of energy available to the human body; it is also extremely caloric (200 cal. in an ounce/ 7cal. per gram) and is second only to pure fat; however, the metabolic process by which it is broken down does not allow it to get stored as fat (can never get fat directly from alcohol, but everything else is); causes the brain to decrease the production of ADH (anti diarrheic hormone), which means that it is a diarrheic and causes you to excrete more fluids; more fluids are excreted than being taken in, which leads to dehydration and is part of the hangover problem); CNS effects- it has an effect on the GABBA receptors (which are inhibitory) but we do not think it is the complete mechanism by which it works; it does stimulate the GABBA receptors like the barbiturates do, but most research suggest that its primary is not through transmitter systems, instead depressing either metabolism within the cell or by affecting membrane actions of neurons; 1-2 average drinks or low levels of alcohol causes the cortex to shifts to an arousal state providing a disinhibition (it inhibits/depresses inhibitory centres); therefore the cortex is disinhibited; once alcohol levels get a bit higher, it begins to depress the cortex directly (EEG starts to go into a depressed state); continues to get more depressive, and depresses the medulla which can depress respiration (it is possible to kill yourself by drinking too much alcohol); when you reach a certain point, there is a reflex that will cause you to throw-up; a couple of drinks a day does lead to longer lives, but drinking a lot per day causes atrophy in the brain (causes a withering away of dendrites); in terms of withdrawal, when you come off of it, you get a hyper excitable brain which causes tremors, convulsions (if extreme enough), hallucinations, and as likely to cause de
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