Consciousness

8 Pages
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Department
Psychology & Brain Sciences
Course Code
PSYCH 100
Professor
tamararahhal

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Description
Consciousness - our awareness of ourselves, our behavior, and our environment at any given moment Consciousness is not a unitary construct: Awake| daydreaming | asleep | subliminal Awake  different levels of awareness Example: learning to drive vs. driving now SLEEP – Circadian Rhythms Circadian rhythm – 1. fluctuations in alertness, energy, and mood over the course of the day Biological clock: About a twenty-four hour period (really twenty-five hours) 2. these shifts are related to underlying bodily processes daily cycles occur in: o hormone production o body temperature o blood pressure 3. changes as age 4. we seem to function better (both cognitively/physically) in our peak time 5. Our circadian cycle runs a little bit long. We see evidence of this in - jet lag - Monday morning blues Stages of Sleep – what happens? 5 stages of sleep (90-100 minute sleep cycle) different patterns of brain activity Stage One Sleep – 5 minutes - less brain activity - hallucinations - jerking - easy to awaken, reasonably coherent Stage Two Sleep – 20 minutes - sleep spindles - still somewhat easy to wake up Stage Three & Stage Four – 30 minutes - delta waves – longer slower peaks - very hard to wake you up - but..whispering your name will wake you up Stage Five Sleep – 30-45 minutes - REM sleep o Strong brain activity o Paradoxical sleep o When dreams occur o Increased sexual arousal o Paralyzed to keep us from acting out our dreams REM Sleep Important characteristics of REM sleep: 1. REM – rebound - If we lose REM sleep, we make it up first - Important physio/psychological function 2. Changes over the course of the evening Why do we sleep? Here is one guess… 1. Sleep provides some essential biological function Evidence: 1. make up lost sleep 2. sleep deprivation effects - mood/irritability - mental work suffers- major accidents - immune system 3. sleep debt - most teens are sleep deprived! - Could have serious mental/physical development repercussions Q: How do we deal with sleep debt? A.naps are good! - pilots on long flights do better if they take a short nap - you can live – happily – with one 30-minute nap every 4 hours - all of the famous people who reported little sleep, also reported frequent naps - tendency to nap might be biologically programmed o siesta cultures Why do we sleep? 1. sleep provides some essential biological function problems with this theory! 1. the amount of sleep needed varies 2. motivation can overcome cognitive deficits 3. too much sleep increases mortality rates  7-8 hours appears optimal  <4 – 10 time high mortality rate  >10 – twice as high mortality rate Paradox: when allowed to free-run, people sleep 9-10 hours Sleep Disorders 1) Klein-Levin - days of interrupted sleep 2) Restless leg syndrome - tension in muscles, jittery, inability to relax during bedtime 3) Night terrors (usually young kids) - suddenly awake in non-REM sleep - extreme fear and panic, sometimes screaming and shrieks - go immediately back to sleep - no recollection of event 4) Narcolepsy - fall asleep at any time o scuba diving/putting out a fire - often triggered by intense emotional experience 5) Apnea - person stops breathing during sleep - wake up gasping, falls back to sleep either: - brain signals to diaphragm are cut off - interference from the tongue, throat or larynx 6) Insomnia - inability to fall asleep (10%-15% of adults get it) Many causes: 1) psychological a. anxiety, depression stress, stimulus overload 2) Drugs a. Caffeine, alcohol, nicotine, decongestants 3) Health problems a. Anything that interferes with breathing Treating Insomnia: 1) limit time asleep/in the bed 2) go to bed only to sleep 3) relaxation trai
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