Cultural Change-Stress-Brain Response

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Hari
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Full Name: Hariharan G
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Cultural Change-Stress-Brain Response

Post by Hari »

Culture is the sum total of human behaviour. Heredity and learning passed on thru generations form the cultural pattern. Culture is dynamic- adapts to developments in the society and outside. Cultural pattern shifts according to changes in the environment, societal norms, technological advances, inventions and so on. For eg; technology has brought in modern conveniences to the door step; but along with it came the stress & strains in human life.

Stress is beneficial when moderately challenged; enhances motivation, better learning; the person feels that 'can rise upto the occasion. Small quantities of cortisone released which is a good motivating factor.

On the contrary if threatened by overwhelming life events,physical or emotional danger, rejection etc stress becomes distress and threat to psychological balance-resulting in confusion, impaired learning,emotional turmoil etc. if prolonged depresses immune system (by too much cortisone) leading to physical indisposition.

The moment threat is detected brain jumps into high gear.amygdala (emotional centre, part of limbic circuit) receives inputs from cortex,and other vegetative brain and sends thru its neural projections to activate the entire autonomic nervous system.At the same time hypothalamus releases CRF to pituitory which in turn releases ACTH to adrenals to secrete glucocorticoids and adrenaline.There is chemical imbalance. This not only makes too much of cortisone but also adrenaline, norepinephrine, vasopressin and so on. This results in lowering of serotonin which is an emotional modulator.

Excess cortsone for prolonged periods can destroy neurons of hippocampus which is an important centre of learning and serves as a cognitive tuner. Amygdala and hippocampus are opposing centres for balancing emotion(manakkilarchchi) and thinking, planning & learning(buddhi). In high stress this balance is compromised.The result is irrational behaviour, impulsiveness, difficulty in learning and high arousal. In the long run this can result in physical and psychological disturbances.
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Badri
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Full Name: Kannivelu Badrinath
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Re: cultural change-stress-brain response

Post by Badri »

Hi Hari,
Thank you for an excellent summary of the physiological processes connected with stress. It explains a number of things in daily life. It illustrates why a child coming from a broken family or where a father and mother are constantly fighting against each other is unable to learn and progress in school.
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AP Raghuthaman
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Re: cultural change-stress-brain response

Post by AP Raghuthaman »

Hi Hari,
Nice informative post.
Raghuthaman
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