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Lower Level Brain Structures

Lower Level Brain Structures

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Lower Level Brain Structures

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  1. Lower Level Brain Structures

  2. Lower Level Brain Structures These are the inner most levels of your brain This part of the brain developed first

  3. The Brainstem • Brainstem – the oldest, most basic part of the brain, where the spinal cord swells and becomes the brain • The brainstem is responsible for automatic survival functions

  4. The Brainstem Cont’d Medulla – the base of the brainstem The Medulla is responsible for basic life support functions such as breathing, blood circulation, and swallowing Damage to this region leads to almost certain death

  5. The Brainstem Cont’d • Reticular Formation – a nerve network in the brainstem that plays an important role in controlling wakefulness and arousal • The reticular formation controls an organism’s overall level of alertness. • Damaging this region can result in a coma

  6. The Thalamus • Thalamus – the brain’s sensory switchboard, located on top of the brainstem • This part of the brain directs messages to the proper regions of the brain for processing

  7. Cerebellum – the “little brain” attached to the rear of the brainstem • The cerebellum coordinates voluntary movements, balance, and muscle memory • Damage to this region would cause problems with coordination The Cerebellum

  8. The Limbic System Limbic System – a ring of structures at theborder of the brainstem and cerebral cortex The limbic system helps regulate functions such as memory, fear, aggression, hunger, and thirst The limbic system is made up of the hypothalamus, hippocampus, and amygdala

  9. Limbic System Cont’d Hypothalamus – A neural structure lying below the thalamus Regulates important functions such as hunger, thirst, reaction to stress, and body temperature Plays a role in experience of emotion, pleasure, and sexual function

  10. Limbic System Cont’d Hippocampus – neural center in the Limbic System Hippo is Greek for horse Wraps around the thalamus and helps process new memories

  11. Limbic System Cont’d Amygdala – Two almond shaped neural clusters in the limbic system Amygdala is Greek for almond The amygdala controls emotions such as fear and anger