THE PERCEPTION OF PAIN

THE PERCEPTION OF PAIN - For example - child birth: Lamaze...

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THE PERCEPTION OF PAIN Pain is an unpleasant yet important function for survival: warning system (but not all pain is needed for survival). There are two different pathways to the brain on which pain can travel - information brought from free nerve endings in the skin to the brain via two different systems: 1) fast pathways - registers localized pain (usually sharp pain) and sends the information to the cortex in a fraction of a second. EX. - cut your finger with a knife. 2) slow pathways - sends information through the limbic system which takes about 1-2 seconds longer than directly to the cortex (longer lasting, aching/burning). Factors in Pain Perception - not an automatic result of stimulation: 1) expectations - research shown that our expectations about how much something will hurt can effect our perception. Melzack - indicated that believing that something will be very painful helps us prepare for it.
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Unformatted text preview: For example - child birth: Lamaze method falsely leads us to believe it won't be painful. Maybe if we know it will be bad we can adequately prepare to handle it. another example - placebo effect - if we believe pain has stopped, it may. 2) personality - people with negative types of personalities often have more pain. E For example - a very uptight person may experience muscle pains, back pains, etc. 3) mood - bad moods, angry, unhappy, etc, can lead to the experience of increased pain. For example - study manipulated moods of subjects then asked them to complete questionnaires of pain perception. Those in negative mood group reported significantly more pain than other subjects. So, it seems that our brains can regulate, control, determine, and even produce pain....
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This note was uploaded on 11/14/2011 for the course PSY PSY2012 taught by Professor Scheff during the Fall '09 term at Broward College.

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