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Fight or Flight? To Run or to Fight!.

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Presentation on theme: "Fight or Flight? To Run or to Fight!."— Presentation transcript:

1 Fight or Flight? To Run or to Fight!

2 FEAR! What is fear? What causes fear?

3 Fear! Fear is a normal human reaction- a built in survival mechanism that involves our mind and body. Fear serves a protective purpose of signaling our body to danger and preparing us to deal with it. Even babies have the survival instincts necessary to respond when they sense danger. Lyness, Darcy, Ph.D. < April 2002.

4 Why do we fear? A fear reaction happens when we sense danger or when we are confronted with something new and unknown that might be potentially dangerous. Lyness, Darcy, Ph.D. < April 2002.

5 When do we fear something?
Have you ever been startled by the sound of a balloon popping and felt your heart beat faster? As soon as your brain gets enough data to realize there is no danger, your fear reaction is over. But if your brain doesn’t receive the “all clear” signal, fear can last longer and be more intense.

6 Fear in People Many people tend to avoid things they are afraid of.
However, there are exceptions. Some people like the feeling of fear and find it exciting. Have you ever ridden a rollercoaster and felt a rush of fear, only to get back on and ride it again? Or gone to see a scary movie even though you know it will make you jump in your seat? Lyness, Darcy, Ph.D. < April 2002.

7 Why do children fear more than adults?
Children tend to have more fears because so many of their experiences are new and unfamiliar. Common fears of children are monsters, thunder, dark rooms, and dogs. Older kids have more common fears of bullies, being embarrassed, heights, insects, etc. Lyness, Darcy, Ph.D. < April 2002.

8 Fear is normal To have several fears that you worry about or feel uneasy about is completely normal. Not only is fear normal but necessary.

9 FEAR! But sometimes fear comes as an instant reaction to a sudden danger. This sudden fear response triggers our body’s defense mechanism known as “fight or flight” reaction. < August 26th, 2005.

10 Fight or Flight The fear reaction is known as the fight or flight response because it is exactly what the body is preparing to do… fight off the danger or run like crazy to get away!

11 So what is the Fight or Flight Response?
It is an automatic response our body has to internal or external stress. Examples of stress: FEAR! Final exams A loud noise Rush hour traffic The response prepares our bodies to either fight or escape from the stress. < Healthwise Incorporated.

12 What Causes the Response?
Hormones in your body are released when a sudden stress is present. These hormones (one of which is epinephrine, commonly known as adrenaline) have many drastic effects on the body. < Healthwise Incorporated.

13 Definition check What is a hormone?
a chemical substance that is formed in one part of the body, travels through the blood, and affects the function of cells elsewhere in the body.

14 Make sure the sound is all the way up for this page
Make sure the sound is all the way up for this page! It is supposed to make the students jump in their seats!

15 What Just Happened? What most of you just felt was the fight or flight response in action. Take a minute and write down as many changes you felt happen to your body just now (or whenever you’ve been scared), such as your hair standing on end. Many of you have probably felt it before when watching a scary movie, hearing a loud unexpected noise, running from a neighborhood dog, etc. Have them fill out the worksheet under What Just Happened?

16 The Affects of the Hormones
The hormones released in your body during the response cause: Increased heart rate Increased respiratory rate (faster breathing) Blood to be directed away from the digestive organs to the muscles and limbs for extra energy < Healthwise Incorporated.

17 Digestive system When you are scared and need to run away from something, would you want your body to expend all of its energy digesting your lunch, or would you want every available bit of energy to go to your muscles so you can run faster?

18 The Affects of the Hormones (continued)
Hormones cause: (continued) The pupils to dilate (enlarge) Perception of pain to greatly be reduced Eyesight to sharpen Awareness to increase The brain to prepare to make impulse decisions and search for possible dangers < Healthwise Incorporated.

19 Goosebumps Why do people get goosebumps?
A fear stimulus the nervous system, which in turn causes contraction of the hair erector muscles. These muscles elevate the hair follicles above the skin and form what are known as goosebumps. In animals, this phenomenon makes the hair stand up and the animal look more frightening. In humans, it seems to serve no practical purpose except to make your skin crawl! < April 2002.

20 Fainting Why do people faint when they are scared?
Fainting from an stressful situation happens when the sympathetic nervous system acts quickly, and some people respond abnormally. Their blood vessels dilate and their heart pumps more forcefully, but the heart cannot compensate fast enough to maintain blood flow. The blood pressure drops, there is not enough blood flow to the brain, and the body passes out.

21 Fainting! Body Faints! Release of Hormones Fear Stimulus!
Blood vessels dilate Faster Heartbeat Body Faints! Heart rate cannot keep up with dilation of blood vessels Blood Pressure Drops Quickly

22 After the Stress Once the stress is gone, and the brain interprets the danger as passed, different hormones are released (nor-epinephrine) that counteract the affects of the first hormones Most of you should be feeling this now. Heart rate returning to normal Breathing returning to normal Feeling more relaxed < Healthwise Incorporated.

23 How Fear affects Memory
What is memory? Memory generally has to do with the way the brain records, stores, and remembers information. Learning occurs and memories are encoded when the stimulus is strong enough to trigger sufficient neural activity. Perez, Pamela. “The Body/Brain Connection in the Conditioned Fear Response”. July 11, 2005.

24 How Fear Affects Memory
Fear is a powerful experience individuals encounter during a lifetime. The strength of the fear that ensues in a situation is critical to species survival since fearful incidents are learned more rapidly and remembered long after a fear provoking event has passed. Perez, Pamela. “The Body/Brain Connection in the Conditioned Fear Response”. July 11, 2005.

25 Fear and Memory If you have been bitten by a black widow in the past, your body will instinctively trigger the sympathetic nervous system to the “fight or flight” response if you see another spider. Perez, Pamela. “The Body/Brain Connection in the Conditioned Fear Response”. July 11, 2005.

26 Phobias!!!! What Is a Phobia? A phobia is an intense, unreasonable fear of a thing or a situation that is far out of proportion to the actual danger or harm that is possible. <

27 Examples of Phobias Fear of the number 13 –Triskadekaphobia
Fear of school – Scolionophobia Fear of long waits – Macrophobia Fear of teenagers – Ephebiphobia Fear of puppets – Pupaphobia Fear of peanut butter sticking to the roof of the mouth- Arachibutyrophobia Fear of heights -- Acrophobia Culbertson, Fred. July 17, 1995.

28 What causes Phobias? Phobias can develop when a person has an encounter with an object or situation that involves or provokes fear. The person learns to avoid the situation they fear, which can reduce their anxiety for the time. The difficulty is that these avoidance behaviors have to keep happening even sooner to provide the same relief. The pattern of anxiety, avoidance, and worry about the possibility of contact tends to interfere more with life over time. Lyness, Darcy, Ph.D. < April 2002.

29 Do you have an intense fear of something?
Think about some things that you might fear. Write down what you intensely fear. For example, do you fear snakes, spiders, or getting lost? Write down what you do to avoid these fears. For example, do you not walk in tall grass to avoid snakes, or take maps everywhere you go to avoid getting lost? Have the students fill out the second part of the worksheet.

30 BOOOOOO!!!! Have the students answer the post-test questions.

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