Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Neuroception? - An Unconscious Perception?

A Subconscious
System for
Detecting Threats
and Safety

University of Illinois at Chicago

Faulty neuroception might lie at the root of several psychiatric disorders.

At a glance:
• Neuroception describes how neural circuits distinguish whether situations or people are safe, dangerous, or life threatening.
• Neuroception explains why a baby coos at a caregiver but cries at a stranger, or why a toddler enjoys a parent’s embrace but views a hug from a stranger as an assault.
• The Polyvagal Theory describes three developmental stages of a mammal’s autonomic nervous system:
Immobilization, mobilization, and social communication or social engagement.
• Faulty neuroception might lie at the root of several psychiatric disorders, including autism, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders, depression, and Reactive Attachment Disorder.

Has Stephen Porges uncovered the biology of  Freud's UnConscious "Id"???

Does Polyvagal Theory give a clearer holistic view of the root cause of Affective Disorders like Bipolar?

Does Polyvagal Theory & Neuroception provide a casual link between mental disorders that may be the truncated response of a natural, evolved mammalian reaction towards threat, both external & internal?

Is a misunderstood autonomic (animal) nervous system, at the core of human disorders from Autism to Schizophrenia and including the many symptoms of PTSD & BPD?

Are body psychotherapy techniques like those described in Peter Levine's SomaticExperiencing applicable therapies for affective disorders, in combination with pharmacology & perhaps a means of reducing medication between crisis's, even eventually living medication free, as I now do?

I now use Levine's method to manage my affective experience, it allows me to discharge the energies of mania & avoid the temptation of depressive conservation/withdrawal now that I can identify the three active areas of my triune nervous system, thanks to my reading of "Polyvagal Theory."

I highly recommend reading Levine's new book "In an UnSpoken Voice" & Stephen Porges soon to be released "The Polyvagal Theory" and Allan N Schore's "Affect Regulation and the Repair of the Self" Porges and Schore give a solid science based picture of our neurobiological nature, beyond the science of managing affective disorders as disease's.

John Chitty has perhaps the best education on the autonomic nervous system here on the internet, listen to him talk about the miracle hug of new born twins.