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Chapter 7.docx

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Elizabeth Page- Gould

Chapter 7 -meditation makes people less anxious, negative, and healthier What is Neuroscience and How do we Study it? -focus on the brain + nervous system -central nervous system= brain + spinal cord -peripheral nervous system= somatic nervous system (muscles) + autonomic nervous system (smooth muscles, cardiac + glands) -autonomic=sympathetic (fight or flight) + parasympathetic (replenishes body’s’ energy stores) -brain protected by cerebrospinal fluid (CSF)-> flows through ventricles -Bodily Responses -around arousing events-> autonomic nervous system -galvanic skin response (GSR): measures sweat; measure of skin conductance- the faster the current, the more moisture present from greater arousal -electromyography (EMG): measures muscle activity; measures myoelectric activity, estimates the electrical impulses of the muscles during contraction + relaxation -Brain Structures -some scientists looks for weight difference/cell # differences b/w different parts of the brain -computerized tomography (CT): takes high resolution x-ray to detect abnormalities; -magnetic resonance imaging (MRI): radio frequencies are used instead of x-rays to take pictures -magnetic fields resonate atoms’ nuclei, radio frequencies detect these atoms, and the pattern of the hydrogens’ resonance are detected -Brain Activity -measures of activity to detect differences in the brain-> often when working with a mental task -early studies used cortical stimulation -electrode implants + electrical stimulation -electroencephalogram (EEG): electrodes placed on scalp to measure electrical activity of brain from a response to a stimulus -evoked potential (EP): specific stimulus for an EEG -positron emission tomography (PET): radioactive glucose substance with a short half- life is injected into the brain + patient placed into a CT-like scanner; active regions of the brain light up more than inactive regions (use up more glucose) -functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI): same idea as original MRI, but brain blood oxygen levels are monitored; more active areas use up more oxygen -problem of response timing-> thoughts react within milliseconds versus blood flow taking a couple of seconds -therefore, hard to find exact area/moment of reaction -problem of being expensive + time consuming -nonindependance error: researchers unintentionally bias their results by not independently selecting which brain areas to correlate with eg) personality characteristics -problem of time of day (tiredness) + nervousness can affect results -transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS): brief electrical current passes through a coil on the head-> disrupts regular electron activity, either enhancing or impairing function; researchers can pinpoint with great accuracy what function was disrupted -mimics a brain lesion -Biochemical Activity -neurotransmitters: chemicals released by neurons to inhibit or excite the neuron eg) norepinephrine, epinephrine, dopamine, serotonin -norepinephrine + epinephrine= stress hormones; increasing blood flow, etc -norepinephrine linked to depression -dopamine=feelings of pleasure; regulate movement, learning, attention, etc -serotonin= mood regulation, arousal, sleeping, eating, pain, etc -connected to depression, anxiety + other mood disorders -anti-anxiety/depression medication act as another neurotransmitter -blocking reuptake of a neurotransmitters -challenge test: researchers give a drug known to either increase/decrease a neurotransmitter’s function + monitor the impact Neurological Theories of Personality -temperament: set of personality characteristics ->relatively stable across the life span ->expressed through general energy level ->present from early childhood -> similar in other species of animals ->present at birth ->determined by genetic factors ->changeable with maturation + experience -all major personality types converge on 3 primary temperaments -extraversion: +ve emotion, reward sensitivity, social rewards, sociability + approach -neuroticism: -ve emotion, anxiety, punishment sensitivity, withdrawal -impulsivity: psychoticism, lack of constraint, sensation seeking, novelty seeking, lack of conscientiousness + lack of agreeableness -Eysenck’s PEN Model -discovery of extraversion, neuroticism + psychoticism= PEN -overview of the three dimensions -Extraversion -when high in this factor, people are sociable, optimistic + unreliable -when low in this factor, people are quiet, introspective, reserved, reliable, have few close friends -Neuroticism -when high in this factor, distressed, insecure, upset in many areas of lie; chronically worried, nervous, moody, low opinion of themselves, -when low in this factor, even-tempered, calm, relaxed, carefree, unworried, unemotional -Psychoticism -when high in this factor, loner, egocentric, troublesome, manipulative, impulsive, uncooperative, hostile, withdrawn + do not fit in -when low in this factor, altruistic, socialized, empathetic, conventional -the cross-cultural universality in these traits implies a biological component -the 3 traits show a great consistency over time in one’s life despite environment changes -the 3 traits have moderate heritability discovered -neurology of extraversion -main difference b/w introverts + extroverts= arousal differences -introverts have greater cortical arousal than extraverts -ascending reticular activating system (ARAS): cortical arousal; pathway transmitting signals from limbic system + hypothalamus-> cortex -introverts have an over-aroused baseline condition; they avoid conditions that would engage their already over-stimulated condition -extraverts let in too little stimulation so their under aroused state leads them towards more stimulation ->no difference in arousal when sleeping -neurology of neuroticism -stability/instability of sympathetic nervous system eg) hippocampus, amygdale, cingulum, septum, hypothalamus -think of it like a smoke detector-> won’t respond to small events like burning toasts, and only respond to the house on fire ->people high in neuroticism have very sensitive ‘smoke detectors’, therefore more susceptible to negative emotions more easily -Reinforcement Sensitive Theory (RST) -personality is the variation in brain system functioning ->identifiy brain behaviour systems that had important differences among different people ->link the systems to standard measures of personality -overview of 3 neurological systems -there are 3 brain-behavior system -fight-flight freeze system (FFFS): associated with the emotion of fear + responsible for our reactions to aversive stimuli -fight or run from stimulus ->fearfulness + avoidance= phobias + panic disorders -behavioural approach system (BAS): organizes reactions to “appetitive stimuli”= enticing, pleasurable + rewarding stimuli -BAS makes one more sensitive to reward ->optimism, impulsiveness + ‘anticipatory pleasure’= addictive behaviours, high-risk impulsive behaviors + mania -behavioral inhibition system (BIS): once thought to control inhibition of behaviour, now thought to resolve conflicts; choosing b/w 2 good things or 2 distasteful things eg) Which movie to watch? Which bill to open first? -until the conflict is resolved, people experience anxiety, worry, risk assessment, sense
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