Helping Improve Your Emotional Wellbeing
The gateway to the emotional system in the deeper part of the brain is the Amygdala. It is the watch dog – or area for surveillance and vigilance. It is very active when you are anxious or fearful.
It is part of the “so what” pathway in the brain that helps you to gauge the emotional significance of everything you perceive and alerts you subconsciously and rapidly to anything that may require action.
It’s likely that damage to this “so what” pathway, causes a condition where a person thinks everyone they know well are impostors, because they lose the emotional jolt, that accompanies recognition.
Though it may seem to us an extreme conclusion, the brain dislikes discrepancies and is prepared to entertain the absurd and delusional in preference.
When highly activated the amygdala stimulates the hypothalamus which prepares the body to: feed, fight, flee or woo. These are the primitives of many of our emotions – essential for life regulation.
The hypothalamus is the master controller of the Autonomic Nervous System (ANS), which regulates our physical responses to emotion: muscle tone, blood pressure, heart rate, breathing, digestion and the immune system. It also releases hormones and affects levels of blood sugar and cholesterol.
The ANS has two branches, the sympathetic nervous system which is active when we are stressed and governs fight or flight and the parasympathetic nervous system, helps us relax, recuperate and conserve.
Being still and paying careful attention, particularly to our hands and to sound, are good ways to calm the amygdala. Research suggests that meditation, feedback from a healthy spine and good physical balance, may also help, which could be one of the mechanisms, for the health benefits of meditation and yoga.
The amygdala, helps us remember emotional events, particularly terrifying ones – real or imagined – and it’s role in learning can cause aversions, even if we can’t remember why. It can block the senses reaching the outer conscious part of the brain.
The amygdala has widespread connections, particularly with areas of the brain dealing with our feelings. It’s important for general memory and helps focus the mind on things that might be interesting.
Any goal oriented behaviour initiated by the brain triggers anxiety initially and gives us a feeling of reward when we are finished.
To have a check on your nervous system or learn more about staying calm, call 01772 74925 and make a “New Patient Consultation” visit with Louis Westerbeek.
From the Preston Chiropractor Team
Getting You Back in Action & Enjoying Your Life Again
Serving the people of Preston and surrounding areas including Southport and Lytham St Annes