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Ashford University. PSY Include information on brain structures pathways and. Uploaded By brenda Additional emphasis should be placed on relating the underlying pathology of brain trauma and damage to the actual biologic mechanism of how various treatments support repair and restoration of function. Analyze the clinical, biological, and psychological factors that are important in successful brain function recovery outcomes.

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How can the brain repair itself or restore lost function after TBI or other brain damage Focus on the concept of neuroplasticity. What are some clinical interventions e. There are two main types of TBI the penetrating head injury and the closed head injury. Research limitations largely prevent study of these processes directly in humans; thus, what is known has primarily been determined through animal studies. This work provides insight into processes that may be occurring in the human brain.

The most surprising and exciting type of neuroplasticity is the actual measurement of birth, migration, maturation, and functional integration of new neurons in the adult brain. Once labeled, cells can be subsequently traced through the maturation and integration process. By utilizing animal models, researchers are able to examine patterns and factors related to rates of cell proliferation, maturation, and survival associated with different experimental conditions e.

Neurons born in the subventricular zone SVZ adjacent to the caudate are incorporated into the olfactory bulb; those born in the subgranular zone SGZ of the dentate gyrus are incorporated into the hippocampus Figure 1. Growth factors e. When confronted with major changes or challenges, the brain can adapt by remodeling and refining existing connections. Conversely, various factors can contribute to loss of synapses, shrinkage or retraction of dendrites de-branching , and pruning of axons, thereby reducing communication in those areas.

After injury e. Multiple factors have been found to modulate neuroplasticity in animal studies, pointing to internal and external variables that may influence this process in humans, as well. Factors that have been associated with increased neurogenesis include environmental enrichment, exercise, learning, electroconvulsive shock, and chronic administration of antidepressants and other psychotropic medications.

Extensive animal studies have focused on the effects of various types of stress on neuroplastic processes. In considering the effects of both acute and chronic stress, it is essential to differentiate negative aversive stress from positive rewarding stress. As noted previously, multiple animal studies have reported detrimental effects on both behavioral measures and neuroplastic processes associated with chronic negative stress.

Humor, Neuroplasticity and the Power To Change Your Mind

In contrast, successful coping with intermittent social stress enhanced both spatial learning and hippocampal neurogenesis in adult male squirrel monkeys. Multiple studies have documented neuroplastic changes in healthy human brains as a result of normal processes, such as learning. Both cross-sectional and longitudinal studies support the induction of neuroplastic changes by musical training. Both blind and deaf individuals often demonstrate superior skills in their remaining senses, as compared with individuals with all senses intact.

Braille reading, for example, has been shown to require participation of visual cortex.


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Both animal and human research has provided supportive evidence that chronic stress and some forms of mental illness have deleterious effects on the brain, both structurally and functionally. Numerous studies of various neuropsychiatric disorders have found significant structural differences between patients and healthy individuals. Other studies have also found a relationship between hippocampal volume and treatment outcomes, with larger hippocampal volume predictive of positive treatment outcomes and rates of remission.

The cross-sectional design utilized in most studies makes it difficult to determine whether these structural differences were present before the psychiatric illness developed possible risk factors or if they are a result of the conditions themselves. This has continued to be an area of debate.

For a period of time, it was assumed that stress and mental illness directly caused the observed differences in brain volume. However, a seminal study in pairs of identical twins suggested that smaller hippocampal volume served as a risk factor for developing PTSD, rather than an acquired trait. A common, yet simplistic, assumption regarding volumetric changes is that they are directly due to changes in cell quantity increase or decrease ; however, this has not necessarily been well-supported by postmortem studies.

A review of the documented changes in animal models of stress and depression in humans, coupled with the estimated volume fraction of each cortical component, supported the hypothesis that the majority of gray-matter volume changes reported in depression are due to decreased synapses and dendritic regression, rather than a reduction in cell numbers Figure 2.

Researchers have begun examining ways to harness neuroplasticity to promote healing and recovery. Although these efforts are still in the beginning stages, there is promising evidence that the dynamic qualities of the brain may play a pivotal role in how one copes with stress and mental illness. This work has now become readily accessible, both individually and through classes, worldwide. Instructive DVDs and short demonstrations of Feldenkrais movements are offered free through the Internet [ 46 ], accessible to home and professional office.

Case study. Through this lesson I would engage her body in sequential movements uniquely tailored to the current requirements of her musculoskeletal, and nervous systems. I moved parts of her body gently and purposefully, with the intention of differentiating, and thereby reintegrating, neuromuscular and sensory elements within her nervous system.

Oh… I have a leg. It's weird that I have an arm and that it is attached to me. She left my office that day feeling whole, calmed, and at peace with herself. The jacket that had hidden her body previously, was now flung over her squared, and unconstrained shoulders as she strode out the door. She began to experiment with alternative options for initiating and differentiating her movements. Her experimentation evoked novel sensations, in propelling herself forward first from her toes, then her heels, her shoulders and hips.

Some time after the group experience ended, she contacted me to report that she had recovered fully from her ED and had returned to graduate school to become a nurse, something she had wanted to do all her life. Part of the uniqueness of the Feldenkrais Method as an adjunct to psychotherapy is in the novelty of changing the endings of familiar internal narratives to become those that carry elements of change and limitless possibilities.

In the case of ED, readiness for change is prerequisite to engaging in change. In such instances, once the ED brain has returned to its normal functioning in recovery, the ADHD diagnosis may no longer apply. All memory begins with sensory input [ 50 ]. Trauma is stored in somatic memory and expressed as changes in the biological stress response, creating undischarged energy in the nervous system [ 51 ]. The attuned therapist, in revisiting traumatic memories with the patient, seeks to find meaning in the experience through differentiation, and to provide a new, healthy narrative for the suffering individual through integration.

In bringing implicit and explicit memories together, patients experience the attributes of integration — flexibility, adaptability, cohesion energy, and stability [ 4 ]. As the organization of the body changes physically in term of movement, posture, and arousal level, a different, more positive sense of self emerges [ 52 ]. Unprocessed traumatic memories stored in the brain become recycled when triggered, creating imbalanced patterns of nervous system activation. Yoga has been shown to promote affect tolerance of physical and sensory experiences associated with fear and helplessness [ 34 ].

Psychosomatic expressions of bodily experiences are typically embedded in a broad variety of psychopathological and intersubjective phenomena [ 52 ]. In this context, patients confront and manage the dysfunctional parts of themselves manifested in behaviors such as cutting, starving, binging and purging, substance abuse, morbid obesity, suicide attempts, etc. Anchoring resources may include tactile stimulation, auditory tapping, or installing stabilizing imaginal resources through guided imagery [ 59 ]. Sensorimotor psychotherapy is a mindful psychodynamic psychotherapy that includes the body as central in the therapeutic field of awareness.

Promoting the same goals as psychotherapy, its practice blends theory and technique from cognitive and dynamic therapy with straightforward physical interventions, facilitating body awareness, sensation tracking, and empowerment. Biofeedback is applied to the brain directly, as a noninvasive approach to operant conditioning of the electrical activity emanating from large groupings of cortical neurons, with the purpose of normalizing deregulated EEG activity.

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The technique represents an effective alternative for modifying the neurophysiological activity in the brain that contributes to specific cognitive processing, and emotional and behavioral disregulation. It has been discovered that EEG functional abnormalities in the prefrontal, cingulate, and temporal regions respond differently to stimuli [ 18 ].

This intervention sends low dose magnetic pulses to parts of the brain associated with treatment resistant depression TRD. Mental disorders have been discovered to be disorders of disruptions in brain circuits. These concepts render antiquated, the notion that ED are merely chemical imbalances or social constructs. Practitioners and researchers stand on the precipice of a new age of ED diagnosis and treatment.

Neuroimaging has begun to yield biomarkers, patterns that predict response to treatment or possibly reflect changes in physiology prior to changes in behavior or mood [ 63 ]. Through these advances, neuroscience has begun to shed light on how people make changes in psychotherapy. The role of the embodied self and somatosensory, bottom up education in the etiology, maintenance, healing and possible prevention of ED enlightens our understanding of how people learn and of what constitutes healing in treatment and recovery.

Nowhere in the field of mental health are the concepts of the embedded self and embodied healing as significant as in the treatment of ED and body image disturbances. Much of what we are learning about the neural basis of mental illness, however, is unfortunately not yet ready for the clinic, as clinicians as a whole are not adequately prepared through formal professional training to take on and integrate the full import of the role of the brain in ED onset, treatment, and recovery.

By understanding more about the organ they treat, practitioners not only serve their ED patients, but also become instrumental in defining new directions for quantitative ED research. I extend my deepest appreciation to my husband Lou, and my talented daughter, Elizabeth, who edited this chapter skillfully and with love. Licensee IntechOpen. This chapter is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.

Help us write another book on this subject and reach those readers. Login to your personal dashboard for more detailed statistics on your publications. We are IntechOpen, the world's leading publisher of Open Access books. Built by scientists, for scientists. Our readership spans scientists, professors, researchers, librarians, and students, as well as business professionals.

Downloaded: Abstract By recognizing eating disorders EDs as disruptions in brain circuitry, neuroscience has begun to shed light on how people make changes in psychotherapy. Anorexia nervosa AN and bulimia nervosa BN are disorders of the brain 2.


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Neurological effects of ED on child and adolescent brains The onset of AN in the developing brains of children and adolescents put young patients at risk for serious neurophysiological dysfunction. Human experience facilitates brain development Historically, we tend to think of learning as initiated internally, within the cranial brain, but this is only partly the case.

Clinical applications of mindfulness within ED treatment 4. The talking connection in psychotherapy is an embodied connection Siegel describes the mind as relational, as well as embodied. Movement with attention facilitates learning Where attention goes, neural firing occurs, and where neurons fire, new connections can be made. The healthy mind, body and self weave a fabric of unified connection Scientific evidence of the unity of mind and body in defining the healthy self has validated years of Buddhist thought and practice.

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Holistic Psychotherapy

Somatosensory interventions facilitate increased production of improved neuronal pathways and brain circuitry The brain that drives the movement of thoughts and emotions also drives the movement of bodily feedback and sensation. Clinical applications of somatosensory research in eating disorder treatment 6.

Neuroplasticity - Nervous system physiology - NCLEX-RN - Khan Academy

Neurophysiological interventions in the treatment of co-occurring trauma 7. Sensorimotor psychotherapy Sensorimotor psychotherapy is a mindful psychodynamic psychotherapy that includes the body as central in the therapeutic field of awareness.