The Autonomic Nervous System regulates cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive and urinary functions. The ANS studies have changed medicine practices. Before, the thought of a myocardial infarction patient living past five years was unheard of. Now doctors have learned to manipulate the ANS system with drugs that help to control blood pressure. The Autonomic Nervous System is composed of two divisions, Sympathetic and the parasympathetic divisions. They are involved in the unconscious regulations of visceral functions.
These two divisions counter balance each other’s activity. The Sympathetic divisions mobilize the body during extreme or intense situations. The sympathetic or thoracolumbar division is also known as your fight or flight system. It involves the E activities exercise, emergency, embarrassment and excitement. It prepares the body for heightened levels of somatic activities. Sympathetic division of ANS increases a number of things such as mental alertness, metabolism, respiratory rate, heart rate, Blood pressure and sweat glands.
It also decreases some things like digestive and urinary systems. The role of sympathetic division is to promote adjustments during exercise so that blood flow to organs is decreased and blood flows to muscles are increased. A good example would be a person driving down a dark country road. There heart rate would increase as well as the alertness and breathing. The eye pupils will dilate also. This would be their bodies’ immediate response. The parasympathetic division or the craniosacral performs maintenance activities.
Its main focus is to conserve the body’s energy. Parasympathetic division involves the D activities such as digestion, defecation, diuresis. The parasympathetic division of the ANS increases the digestive gland, urination, defecation, salivary secretions and Blood pressure. . It also decreases metabolic rate and heart rate. A good example is when a person relaxes after a meal. Their blood pressure, respirations and heart rate levels are lowered.
Gastrointestinal activity is higher and skin becomes warm as the pupils are constricted. The Autonomic nerves system and its two divisions work off or are antagonistic towards each other. They are different in many ways. While sympathetic division increases your heart rate and respiratory rate. The parasympathetic is decreasing them. Sympathetic division comes into play as an intense environment appears but parasympathetic works while your body is in a relaxed or at rest levels.
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