Autonomic Nervous System Consists of motor neurons that conduct impulses from the spinal cord or brainstem to cardiac, smooth, and glandular epithelial tissue ( involuntary functions ) the heartbeat contractions of the stomach and intestines secretions by glands
Sympathetic Nervous System Controlled in the thoracic and upper lumbar segments of the spinal cord Functions as an emergency system – takes control when we exercise strenuously and when strong emotions (anger, fear, hate, anxiety) are elicited.
Parasympathetic Nervous System Controlled in the brainstem and sacral segments of the spinal cord (craniosacral system). Controls under normal, everyday conditions. Tends to do the opposite of the sympathetic nervous system. Together they help our bodies to maintain homeostasis.
Responses Sympathetic Heart beats faster Most blood vessels constrict, causing blood pressure to increase. Blood vessels in muscles dilate, supplying the muscles with more blood. Sweat glands and adrenal glands secrete more abundantly. Salivary and other digestive glands secrete more sparingly. “fight or flight” Parasympathetic Slow heartbeat Increase peristalsis Increase secretion of digestive juices and insulin.