Psych M.D. - Autonomic Nervous System


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Term: Autonomic Nervous System
Definition (Myers): the part of the peripheral nervous system that controls the glands and the muscles of the internal organs (such as the heart). Its sympathetic division arouses; its parasympathetic division calms.
Definition (alternative): the part of the peripheral nervous system that acts as a control system maintaining homeostasis in the body. These activities are generally performed without conscious control. SOURCE-WIKIPEDIA
Contextual explanation: To explain it in the easiest way possible, just think of it this way: It's something in your body that you cannot control. For example, you can control your hands or feet. If you choose not to move them, it doesn't move. However, an example of the autonomic nervous system would be your heartbeat. You can't force your heart to beat or not beat. It does that on its own. Another example is digestion. You don't have control over it. It does it on its own.
Related terms and concepts: http://theneuron.wikifoundry.com/page/Fear-+Elaine+and+Melanie - Your heart will respond differently when you're in fear.
Related websites: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Autonomic_nervous_system http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/auto.html
Edited by: Allen



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