Friday, May 13, 2022

Where Is Your Brain Stem

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Be Good To Your Brain

So what can you do for your brain? Plenty.

  • Eat healthy foods. They contain vitamins and minerals that are important for the nervous system.
  • Get a lot of playtime .
  • Wear a helmet when you ride your bike or play other sports that require head protection.
  • Don’t drink alcohol, take drugs, or use tobacco.
  • Use your brain by doing challenging activities, such as puzzles, reading, playing music, making art, or anything else that gives your brain a workout!

Is It Better To Be Left

After centuries of studying the brain, neuroscientists have come up with an answer. Theres no difference if youre more left-brained or right-brained.

Its best to meet in the middle and exercise both the left and right sides of your brain.

People who use both their right and left the brain to solve problems are able to successfully analyze situations taking into account emotions, as well as logical reasoning.

Those who use their left and right brain actively have a broad range of interests. For example, someone who is a left brain thinker like a scientist or mathematician will enjoy painting and playing the guitar on the weekends. 

We can say the same for someone who is a right-brain thinker like a dancer or artist. As one of their hobbies, they might learn foreign languages and solve math problems.

In sum, its essential for both the left and right brain hemispheres to work together. They both need to find balance because one cant function without the other. 

Types Of Cells And Body Tissues In The Brain And Spinal Cord

The brain and spinal cord have many kinds of tissues and cells, which can develop into different types of tumors.

Neurons : These are the cells in the brain that help determine thought, memory, emotion, speech, muscle movement, sensation, and just about everything else that the brain and spinal cord do.

Unlike many other types of cells that can grow and divide to repair damage from injury or disease, neurons in the brain and spinal cord largely stop dividing about a year after birth . Neurons do not usually form tumors, but they are often damaged by tumors that start nearby.

Glial cells: Glial cells are the supporting cells of the brain. Most brain and spinal cord tumors develop from glial cells. These tumors are sometimes referred to as gliomas.

There are 3 main types of glial cells:

  • Astrocytes help support and nourish neurons. When the brain is injured, astrocytes form scar tissue that helps repair the damage. The main tumors starting in these cells are called astrocytomas or glioblastomas.
  • Oligodendrocytes make myelin, a fatty substance that surrounds and insulates the nerve cell axons of the brain and spinal cord. This helps neurons send electric signals through the axons. Tumors starting in these cells are called oligodendrogliomas.
  • Ependymal cells line the ventricles within the brain and form part of the pathway through which CSF flows. Tumors starting in these cells are called ependymomas.

Medical Definition Of Brain Stem

Reviewed on 3/29/2021

Brain stem: The stem-like part of the base of the brain that is connected to the spinal cord. The brain stem controls the flow of messages between the brain and the rest of the body, and it also controls basic body functions such as , swallowing, rate, blood pressure, consciousness, and whether one is awake or sleepy. The brain stem consists of the midbrain, pons, and medulla oblongata.

Can You Live Without A Brain Stem

What Is The Brain Stem And What Does It Do?

To make a long story short: no, you cannot live without a brain stem.

While there are some brain regions that you can live without, the brain stem is not one. 

Why? 

The brain stem is a vital part for your brain and body to function. It controls your bodys breathing, heart rate, and blood pressure. In addition, It also controls your consciousness and autonomic functions, which are absolute requirements to sustain life.

Brain Stem Injury And Treatment

Its not all bad news when it comes to treating brain stem injuries. As long as the injury is diagnosed early enough, it can be in many cases highly treatable.

Depending on the nature of the injury of course, and what areas of the body are affected, specific exercises and therapy can help strengthen the brain stems function.

We need to understand how our minds work so we can work our minds better.

Jim Kwik, Author of Mindvalleys Superbrain Program

Several studies have shown that physical activity, particularly leg exercises, can support the production of new neurons by stimulating the brain stem pathways. Working out regularly can boost your brain power, improve your memory, and protect your brain from age-related mental decline.

What do you do to boost your brain function? Let us know in the comments below!

Types Of Cells In The Brain

The brain is made up of 2 main types of cells:

Nerve cells are cells that carry the electrical signals that make the nervous system work. They cannot be replaced or repaired if they are damaged. They are the longest cells in the body.

 

 

Glial cells are cells that support, feed and protect the nerve cells. The different types of glial cells are:

  • astrocytes

The choroid plexus is a small organ in the ventricles that makes CSF.

What Is The Function Of The Brain Stem

To get a well-rounded picture of all the brain stem functions, well need to learn what parts does the brain stem connect to.

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The brain stem acts as a primary connection to several parts of the brain. In a way, it can be considered as a control bridge between brain parts.

It links the cerebrum and spinal cord together, as well as the cerebrum with the cerebellum. The cerebellum is positioned right above the brainstem and beneath the occipital lobes at the back.

Within the brainstem are nerve tracts that relay signals from the cerebellum to areas of the cerebral cortex. This allows you to have fine coordination and control of your motor movements.

Other important brain stem functions also include:

  • Alertness
  • Digestion
  • Heart rate
  • Information bridge between the peripheral nerves and spinal cord to the upper areas of the brain

The brain stem is not just a connection between different areas of the brain. It also acts as your bodys management control, regulating many of its autonomic functions.

Ruling Out Other Conditions

Before testing for brain stem death can begin, doctors must carry out a series of checks to ensure that the symptoms aren’t being caused by other factors, such as:

  • an overdose of illegal drugs, tranquillisers, poisons or other chemical agents
  • an abnormally low body temperature
  • severe under-activity of the thyroid gland

Once these factors have been ruled out, tests are carried out to confirm brain death. The diagnosis of brain death has to be made by two senior doctors. Neither of them can be involved with the hospital’s transplant team.

The doctors will explain the tests to you and they’ll keep you informed about your loved one’s condition at all times.

In Conclusion: Brain Anatomy

The human brain is an incredibly complex, hardworking organ. As one-half of the human nervous system, the brain structure oversees nearly all of the bodys operations, including how we move, think, feel and understand ourselves and the world around us. And knowing all this brain anatomy is important. From the cerebrum, cerebellum and the brain stem, to all the parts in between: this three-pound organ is what makes us humans, well, human.

 

Alcoholism And Binge Drinking

The amygdala appears to play a role in binge drinking, being damaged by repeated episodes of intoxication and withdrawal. Alcoholism is associated with dampened activation in brain networks responsible for emotional processing, including the amygdala.Protein kinase C-epsilon in the amygdala is important for regulating behavioral responses to , , and controlling anxiety-like behavior. The protein is involved in controlling the function of other proteins and plays a role in development of the ability to consume a large amount of ethanol. The duration of chronic alcohol consumption and abstinence may affect dynamic brain network adaptations.

Continuing Brain Stem Damage Rehabilitation At Home

To ensure the best recovery from brain stem damage, you should practice your home exercises every day after therapy. If you struggle with memory problems, have your therapist write you a home exercise sheet to help you remember exactly how to do them.

There are also home therapy devices, such as , which walk you through exercises in a fun and engaging manner. These devices can help you stay motivated in a way that hand-out sheets do not.

Practicing your exercises every day will keep your brain stimulated and can help you recover from brain stem damage that much quicker. 

Questions This Article Will Answer

  • What are the characteristics of the right brain and left brain?
  • What are the brains anatomy and function?
  • What were the split-brain experiments?
  • What are some activities performed by each hemisphere?
  • How did the Mayo Clinic map the brain?
  • What careers are good for right and left-brained people?
  • The chief function of the body is to carry the brain around.

    Thomas A. Edison

    Where Is Your Brain Located

    What Are the Causes and Effects of Brain

    Your brain fills the upper part of your bony head, which is called the . The top part of the skull, called the cranium, is made of 8 bones. The rest of your skull includes 14 bones in the face and 3 small bones in each ear. How about that! Altogether, there are 28 bones in your skull, and your brain is tucked safely inside, protecting it from most minor bumps and blows. Learn more about the skull at this Neuroscience For Kids site.

    The Brainstem: Middle Of The Brain

    The brainstem is located in front of the cerebellum. Think of the brainstem like a computer hard-drive. It is the bodys main control panel and is responsible for conveying messages between the brain and other parts of the body. The cerebrum, the cerebellum and the spinal cord are all connected to the brainstem. The brainstem has three main parts: the midbrain, the pons and the medulla oblongata.

    The brain stem controls these vital body functions:

    • Breathing
    • Sensory relay
    • Hunger

    Treatment For Brain Stem Damage

    To treat brain stem damage, you must address the symptoms. The most effective way to do this is to trigger neuroplasticity, your brains natural healing mechanism.

    Because of neuroplasticity, your brain can form new neural pathways. These pathways allow undamaged portions of the brain to take over functions controlled by damaged ones. It does this in response to repetition.

    Therefore, the more you practice an action, the more you will reinforce those neural pathways. And the stronger those pathways are, the easier the activity will become.

    This principle applies to every type of brain damage, even brain stem damage. There are several therapies you can take part in to engage neuroplasticity and recover function. We will discuss the most important ones in the sections below:

    Nerve Cells Have Trouble Regrowing Damaged Parts

    Looking at the structure of a neuron, you will notice it has a cell body and several arms that it uses to connect and talk with other neurons . The really long arm that sends signals to other neurons is called axon, and axons can be really long. If an axon is damaged along its way to another cell, the damaged part of the axon will die , while the neuron itself may survive with a stump for an arm. The problem is neurons in the central nervous system have a hard time regrowing axons from stumps. Why do skin cells not have this problem? Skin cells are much simpler in structure. And because they can give birth to entirely new cells, they dont face the problem of having to repair parts of their cells.

    • Figure 1
    • Left: the structure of a brain cell. Note the branch-like arms that extend from the cell body . These arms receive incoming signals. The really long arm that extends to the bottom right is called the axon, which sends signals to a receiving cell. The axon is enveloped by a myelin sheath , which helps signals travel faster along the axon to the receiving cell. Right: when an axon gets injured, the end part dies off and leaves an axon stump. Stumps have a hard time to grow back after injury.

    So, why do damaged neurons have trouble regrowing axons?

    • Figure 2
    • Growing axons looking for new target cells to connect with have a hard time in an injury environment. This is partly due to star-shaped support cells , which spit out chemicals . These chemicals stop axon growth.

    Lobes Of The Brain And What They Control

    Each brain hemisphere has four sections, called lobes: frontal, parietal, temporal and occipital. Each lobe controls specific functions.

    • Frontal lobe. The largest lobe of the brain, located in the front of the head, the frontal lobe is involved in personality characteristics, decision-making and movement. Recognition of smell usually involves parts of the frontal lobe. The frontal lobe contains Brocas area, which is associated with speech ability.
    • Parietal lobe. The middle part of the brain, the parietal lobe helps a person identify objects and understand spatial relationships . The parietal lobe is also involved in interpreting pain and touch in the body. The parietal lobe houses Wernickes area, which helps the brain understand spoken language.
    • Occipital lobe. The occipital lobe is the back part of the brain that is involved with vision.
    • Temporal lobe. The sides of the brain, temporal lobes are involved in short-term memory, speech, musical rhythm and some degree of smell recognition.

    The Role Of Genes And Neurotransmitters

    Chemical signals to sleep     

    Clusters of sleep-promoting neurons in many parts of the brain become more active as we get ready for bed.  Nerve-signaling chemicals called neurotransmitters can switch off or dampen the activity of cells that signal arousal or relaxation.  GABA is associated with sleep, muscle relaxation, and sedation.  Norepinephrine and orexin keep some parts of the brain active while we are awake.  Other neurotransmitters that shape sleep and wakefulness include acetylcholine, histamine, adrenaline, cortisol, and serotonin.

    Genes and sleep

    Sleep studies

    Your health care provider may recommend a polysomnogram or other test to diagnose a sleep disorder.  A polysomnogram typically involves spending the night at a sleep lab or sleep center.  It records your breathing, oxygen levels, eye and limb movements, heart rate, and brain waves throughout the night.  Your sleep is also video and audio recorded.  The data can help a sleep specialist determine if you are reaching and proceeding properly through the various sleep stages.  Results may be used to develop a treatment plan or determine if further tests are needed. 

    Are There Warning Signs For A Brain Stem Stroke

    » Frequently Asked Questions » Are There Warning Signs For A Brain Stem Stroke?

    The warning signs for a brain stem stroke can appear very similar to the symptoms of a affecting other parts of the brain. Vertigo, , and lack of coordination are common. Unlike different types of strokes, the person is not likely to experience weakness on only one side of their body.

    Because the brain stem plays a vital role in so many necessary bodily functions, a stroke that affects this part of the brain is extremely dangerous. This is a life-threatening medical emergency. Brain stem strokes may be hard to diagnose and cause a wide range of symptoms that affect everything from vision to speech to the persons level of consciousness.

    Chemical And Electrical Signals

    The actual signals transmitted throughout the brain come in two forms, electrical and chemical. The two forms are interdependent and meet at the synapse, where chemical substances can alter the electrical conditions within and outside the cell membrane.

    A nerve cell at rest holds a slight negative charge with respect to the exterior; the cell membrane is said to be polarized. The negative charge, the resting potential of the membrane, arises from a very slight excess of negatively charged molecules inside the cell.

    A membrane at rest is more or less impermeable to positively charged sodium ions , but when stimulated it is transiently open to their passage. The Na+ ions thus flow in, attracted by the negative charge inside, and the membrane temporarily reverses its polarity, with a higher positive charge inside than out. This stage lasts less than a millisecond, and then the sodium channels close again. Potassium channels open, and K+ ions move out through the membrane, reversing the flow of positively charged ions. (Both these channels are known as voltage-gated, meaning that they open or close in response

    Suggested Citation:Discovering the Brain

    to changes in electrical charge occurring across the membrane.) Over the next 3 milliseconds, the membrane becomes slightly hyperpolarized, with a charge of about 80 mV, and then returns to its resting potential. During this time the sodium channels remain closed; the membrane is in a refractory phase.

    Suggested Citation:

    Can Cervical Spinal Stenosis Go Away

    11.4A: Functions of the Brain Stem

    Each case varies with each patient. By using upper cervical adjustments, patients have reported relief that was not possible with surgery. For those wanting the best chance in having relief from cervical spinal stenosis, a natural treatment that allows the body to have the ability to target the underlying cause can be very beneficial to the overall health of your body and to finding relief.

    Upper cervical adjustments correct the top two bones of the spine, upper cervical area, and once these two bones are aligned, the rest of your spine naturally follows. This means when one of these top two bones are out of alignment, the rest of the spine can develop misalignments as well. 

    The purpose of upper cervical adjustments is to ensure your brain stem is healthy and provides proper brain to body communication. Unlike medication and surgery where each is based on targeting symptoms, a patient has, upper cervical adjustments allow the body to naturally target the underlying cause of each symptom a patient is having.

    Over time, fewer adjustments are made as the patients upper cervical area becomes strong enough to hold the correction.

    If you are looking for a treatment that can provide the best outcome of relieving you or a loved one from cervical spinal stenosis, an upper cervical treatment should be considered as it lets the body heal and repair itself by targeting the underlying cause of damage without the risks or side effects that come with medication and surgery.

    Tracking Sleep Through Smart Technology

    Millions of people are using smartphone apps, bedside monitors, and wearable items to informally collect and analyze data about their sleep.  Smart technology can record sounds and movement during sleep, journal hours slept, and monitor heart beat and respiration.  Using a companion app, data from some devices can be synced to a smartphone or tablet, or uploaded to a PC.  Other apps and devices make white noise, produce light that stimulates melatonin production, and use gentle vibrations to help us sleep and wake.

    Can You Recover From A Brain Stem Injury

    Damage to some parts of the brain can be managed, however, brain stem injuries can be very difficult to and fatal to your overall health. It can even potentially cause permanent damage. 

    Thats because the brain stem connects your brain to all other parts of your body. Without a brain stem, that connection would be lost and your body cant function.

    Injuries to the brain stem can affect your personality and even paralyze you. Since this is a very sensitive part of the brain, today treatment is limited and very expensive.

    Its not about mental intelligence, its about mental fitness.

    Jim Kwik, Author of Mindvalleys Superbrain Program

    Brain stem treatment

    Its not all bad news when it comes to treating brain stem injuries. As long as the injury is diagnosed early enough, it can be in many cases highly treatable. 

    Depending on the nature of the injury of course, and what areas of the body are affected, specific exercises and therapy can help strengthen the brain stems function.

    Like any other muscle in your body, your brain including the brain stem grows and develops with regular exercise. This includes both actual physical exercise and brain workouts. Together, they stimulate the generation of new neurons and help keep your brain young and active.

    How do you keep your brain healthy and sharp?

    Blood Supply To The Brain

    Two sets of blood vessels supply blood and oxygen to the brain: the vertebral arteries and the carotid arteries.

    The external carotid arteries extend up the sides of your neck, and are where you can feel your pulse when you touch the area with your fingertips. The internal carotid arteries branch into the skull and circulate blood to the front part of the brain.

    The vertebral arteries follow the spinal column into the skull, where they join together at the brainstem and form the basilar artery, which supplies blood to the rear portions of the brain.

    The circle of Willis, a loop of blood vessels near the bottom of the brain that connects major arteries, circulates blood from the front of the brain to the back and helps the arterial systems communicate with one another.

    What Are The Major Areas Of The Brain And What Do They Do

    The cerebrum is the largest part of the brain; the outer part is called the cerebral cortex.The cerebellum is about the size of a pear.The brain stem is located at the bottom of the brain, above the neck, where it connects the brain to the spinal cord.
    Divided into 2 parts called the right and left .Tucked under and behind the cerebrum.Divided into three parts: Medulla, Pons, and Midbrain.
    Responsible for: thinking, senses, producing and understanding language, memories, eating, emotions, body temperature, drinking, sleeping, hormones.Controls muscle movement, balance, coordination.Responsible for automatic survival functions such as breathing, heartbeat, and digestion, as well as such as sneezing, swallowing, and coughing.

    Structure And Function Of The Spine

    The spine is made up of 26 bones divided into 5 sections. These bones surround and protect the spinal cord. This includes 24 vertebrae , the sacrum and the coccyx.

    Cervical region These are 7 vertebrae at the top of the spine that run from the base of the skull to the lowest part of the neck.

     

    Thoracic region These are 12 vertebrae that run from the shoulders to the middle of the back.

    Lumbar region These are 5 vertebrae that run from the middle of the back to the hips.

    Sacrum This is a large section of fused vertebrae at the base of the spine.

    Coccyx This is a small, thin section of fused vertebrae at the end of the spine.

    Between the vertebrae are the discs .

     

    Disc A layer of cartilage found between the vertebrae. Discs cushion and protect the vertebrae and spinal cord.

    Anatomy Of The Brain And Spine

    Learn more about the anatomy and the functions of the brain and spine

    The brain and spine are vital to keep the body alive and functioning.  Everything we do depends on the messages that are sent from the brain, along the spinal cord and on to the rest of the body.

    Communicating With Stroke Survivors Who Have Aphasia

    While it may be difficult to communicate, people with aphasia have several options when interacting with others.

    Some of these options include:

    Conversely, for those people without aphasia, communicating with stroke survivors who have aphasia can be made easier with some of the following methods:

    • Using pictures or props to make conversation
    • Drawing or writing
    • Speaking simply and slowly

    Treatment And Rehabilitation Following A Brain Stem Stroke

    027 The 3 parts of the brain stem and their functions ...

    Treatment for a brain stem stroke depends on whether the stroke occurred because of a clot or a hemorrhage. The faster doctors can restore blood flow to the affected areas, the better the chances that rehabilitation will help, and the person will recover lost function.

    Doctors can administer clot-busting drugs or use emergency procedures to stop a brain hemorrhage. This is why emergency medical care, a quick diagnosis, and immediate treatment are imperative in getting the best possible outcome.

    Any stroke will leave the patient with some impairments or deficits, although the amount of recovery possible falls on a wide scale. Some people with minor brain injuries may almost fully recover their previous abilities and brain stem functions. Others may not recover any significant movement or even be able to breathe on their own. A doctor or therapist familiar with the case is the best place to learn more about an individuals prognosis.

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