Monday, October 13, 2008
Imagine that scientist have discovered the breakthrough technology for reducing stress or eliminating your stress. They don’t have to in a sense, the body already knows what to do, we as humans don’t realize that we have the natural ability to reduce our stress built right into the model we were given at birth, you read that right, you were given the premium model and didn’t know it. You don’t have to ask for the upgrade.
Our built in mechanism is the natural process we go through at night called Rapid Eye Movement (REM). What is Rapid Eye Movement? In research this is what is said; According to scientific theories, known as the Ontogenetic Hypothesis of REM sleep, this sleep stage (also known as Active Sleep in neonates) is particularly important to the developing brain, possibly because it provides the neural stimulation that newborns need to form mature neural connections and for proper nervous system development. Studies investigating the effects of Active Sleep deprivation have shown that deprivation early in life can result in behavioral problems, permanent sleep disruption, decreased brain mass, and result in an abnormal amount of neuronal cell death. REM sleep is necessary for proper central nervous system development. Further supporting this theory is the fact that the amount of REM sleep in humans decreases with age, as well as data from other species (see below).
One important theoretical consequence of the Onthogenetic Hypothesis is that REM sleep may have no essentially vital function in the mature brain, i.e., once the development of CNS has completed. However, because processes of neuronal plasticity do not cease altogether in the adult brain, REM sleep may continue to be implicated in neurogenesis in adults as a source of sustained spontaneous stimulation.
Yet another theory suggests that monoamine shutdown is required so that the monoamine receptors in the brain can recover to regain full sensitivity. Indeed, if REM sleep is repeatedly interrupted, the person will "make up" for it with longer REM sleep, "rebound sleep", at the next opportunity. Acute REM sleep deprivation can improve certain types of depression when depression appears to be related to an imbalance of certain neurotransmitters. This however is not proven. There is no test that will prove the theory of chemical imbalance. Most antidepressants selectively inhibit REM sleep due to their effects on monoamines. However, this effect decreases after long-term use.
Some researchers argue that the perpetuation of a complex brain process such as REM sleep indicates that it serves an important function for the survival of mammalian and avian species. It fulfills important physiological needs vital for survival to the extent that prolonged REM sleep deprivation leads to death in experimental animals. In both humans and experimental animals, REM sleep loss leads to several behavioral and physiological abnormalities. Loss of REM sleep has been noticed during various natural and experimental infections. Survivability of the experimental animals decreases when REM sleep is totally attenuated during infection; this leads to the possibility that the quality and quantity of REM sleep is generally essential for normal body physiology.
With the research referenced below, imagine that in the height of your stress with purposeful eye blinking you could go to the true original source of the stress and turn on the plasticity process. In my opinion in doing so we as humans could access the parts of the brain that have the information of letting go of the stress because that is the part of the brain that didn’t save that stress to be hashed over and over. When we continue to talk about the parts of our life that aren’t working we are continuing to allow that stress to live in the forefront of our lives, thus possibly creating feelings of separation, chronic pain, depression, etc… which really is dis-ease. With purposeful eye blinking it seems that we access the parts of our brain that store our joy. Brain Scientist Dr. Jill Bolte-Taylor says that in living in our left hemisphere of our brain we disconnect from all of life, meaning we live in our ego. This means we live in fear, when we live in fear we then are not living as our true original blueprint. Living in our right hemisphere of our brain is when we allow healing to happen and we connect as one with all of life. That means we are living in our true original state of Joy.
Imagine being a child purposely blinking to assist with healing from trauma of any kind. If you open up and connect to those parts of the brain that aren’t holding onto the stored trauma you could remember the truth of who you are and where you are from which would start the healing process. What happens as adults, we have allowed that trauma to become our identity. Then we get to tell that story day after day when we meet someone, we then sayI have this ailment, I have that ailment, this trauma happened to me as a child and that trauma happened to me as a child. As children we do not have the skills and tools to heal the wounds. As an adult, you have a choice, to stay in your stress (pain) or to let it go and create a brand new identity for ourselves. When you start telling a new more self empowering story about yourself that is when miracles happen.
Research is being done all the time about the brain and how with easy tools and skills we can all heal the wounds of stress and trauma and create the life we want.
Eye Drives Restructuring of Young Brain
Plasticity Depends on Transcription Factor Traveling Cell to Cell
In the months and years after a much-loved child is born, attentive parents marvel at their many distinct spurts in mental skills. Babies’ eyes begin to focus and soon track moving people and objects. They respond to spoken language before they can utter their first intelligible sounds. In succession, kids can read single letters, then words. Soon, they compose whole sentences and eventually devour the latest Harry Potter book.
These windows of accelerated learning, known as critical periods, seem even more amazing from the perspective of an adult, whose brain woefully struggles in comparison to learn new things. Acquiring a foreign language is much easier before age 11, for example.
Now researchers have discovered an unusual molecular wake-up call that triggers heightened plasticity in the visual cortex in the first month after birth, reports a paper in the Aug. 8 Cell. In one surprise, the brain responds to an outside cue—in this case, eyes opening for the first time—rather than dictating the timing from within. More unexpected is the nature of the cue and the way it work.
When the eyelids of baby mice first flutter open, researchers found, the retinas flood the synaptic highway into the visual cortex with molecules called OTX2. The molecules jump from neuron to neuron to the back of the brain. Once there, they turn on the specific circuitry to rewire the brain for sight.
“The eyes are sending more than neural images and electric signals. They are sending a molecular messenger that switches on the plasticity process,” said senior author Takao Hensch, HMS professor of neurology at Children’s Hospital Boston. “It’s quite a distance to go.”
The phenomenon may apply more broadly, scientists speculate. Similar proteins from the ear, nose, or skin at different times may open plasticity in the auditory, olfactory, and other sensory regions in the brain.
“This paper establishes a key new mechanism where activity in one part of the brain [the retina] can control plasticity in another [the cortex],” said Michael Shelanski, codirector of the Taub Institute for Research on Alzheimer’s Disease and the Aging Brain at Columbia University, who was not involved in the study. “Neuronal plasticity is required for learning and for repair in the nervous system.”
The authors see therapeutic potential down the road. “It’s a bit of a science fiction now, but the fact that we can access the brain mechanism of plasticity from the periphery gives us a new route of entry for brain therapies,” Hensch said. He envisions delivering tiny specialized proteins to boost development of specific cells whose impairment may cause disorders ranging from vision loss to schizophrenia.
References for research done in this blog:
Rapid Eye Movement: Wikipedia
for the entire article on the Eye Drives Restructuring of Young Brain: http://focus.hms.harvard.edu/2008/082908/development.shtml