PART II: The Sympathetic State

Our next discussion, Part II includes the discussion of the Sympathetic Vagal NS

The sympathetic activation state: The amygdala is constantly alert to threats and sends an alarm that increases heart rate, blood pressure temperature, change of muscle tone, shortness of breath, sweating, and releases adrenaline, and cortisol in an attempt to handle the stress. But long-term functions such as digestion, sexual functions, and metabolism are cut off to ensure enough energy is available for the survival response at the moment. Because the prefrontal cortex is focused on analyzing, it is too slow to be able to react to threats therefore the amygdala turns the prefrontal cortex off to allow the reptilian or hindbrain to take over to protect the body instantaneously. The reptilian brain mobilizes us to act.  We only become aware of our behaviour, in a split second after the unplanned survival response when the frontal cortex comes on board again. 

When the ANS consistently signals danger,  it gets stuck in the survival or fight-flight response and our reactions are misplaced in terms of time,  person, and place. This pattern results in dysregulation of the brain causing irrational and inappropriate responses and may result in inflammatory responses and ultimately in immune disease.

Our next discussion includes the discussion of the Dorsal Vagal State Part III

Dr Annemie Peche

082 33 561 33