Brain & Nervous System

The nervous system is an amazing and complex network of nerve cells, or neurons, which allow us to communicate with the outside world. Neurons relay messages as electrical signals from the receptor, such as your skin when you touch a hot pan, to your muscles, which contract pulling your arm away, simultaneously sending pain signals to the brain.

The nervous system as a whole consists of two distinct parts, the central nervous system (CNS) and peripheral nervous system (PNS). The CNS includes all the nerves of the brain and spinal cord, safely contained within the skull and vertebral canal of the spine. All of the other nerves in the body are part of the PNS.

On a deeper level, both the CNS and PNS can be split into two further classifications, voluntary or involuntary. The voluntary, or somatic, nervous system controls all our conscious movements, like waving, walking and opening our mouths. Pretty straightforward. The involuntary or autonomic nervous system controls the things we can’t consciously influence and is slightly more complex. This includes regulating bodily processes like breathing and heart rate. An example of how this works in reality, if your body gets too hot, your involuntary nervous system increases the blood circulation to your skin and makes you sweat more to cool your body down again.

Needless to say, when things go awry with your brain and nervous system you can face difficult to treat conditions like epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, cognitive problems and behavioural problems. There are many environmental factors as well as mainstream drugs that can affect the functioning of your brain and nervous system. For instance, the anti-anxiety drug Xanax has recently been linked to irreversible dementia. The Internet and all the technological advances of the past decade have also been shown to affect our deep-brain thinking (losing the ability to transfer knowledge from short-term “working” memory to long-term memory).

The Daily Health explores all the risk factors and potentially dangerous therapies while offering alternative measures that will help you protect this very important and delicate system.

Latest Articles in Brain & Nervous System

acupuncture

Acupuncture May Help Improve Memory Loss

In the past we've written quite a lot about the numerous health benefits associated with traditional medicinal practices like acupuncture, ranging from allergy relief to helping ea...

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MS

Living With Multiple Sclerosis Made Easier

My cousin suffers with multiple sclerosis (MS)... I only found out about her illness in the past year, even though she was diagnosed almost 15 years ago. And that's the story of m...

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mediteraneandiet

Mediterranean Diet Helps Keep Your Memory Sharp

If you still have no idea what your New Year's resolution is going to be, here's something that might point you in the right direction: The Mediterranean Diet. More and more resea...

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headache, memory

Folate could help boost your memory

Folate – also known as vitamin B9 – is generally taken by pregnant women (in the form of folic acid) to help prevent defects, like spina bifida. Folic acid is a synthetic versi...

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parkinson's disease

Slow Down Parkinson?s Disease Naturally?

Parkinson's disease is a condition that robs millions of people of their muscle control, balance, and even the ability to speak. One of the ways to combat the fast progression of t...

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Black eyed peas

Vitamin B6 Deficiency Could Increase The Risk Of Parkinson’s Disease

Like Alzheimer's disease, there's not much the mainstream can do to effectively treat Parkinson's disease - it's more a case of managing and alleviating the symptoms than actually...

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swine flu, environmental toxin

Potentially Toxic Residue From MRI Drugs

There's that jolt of anxiety when your doctor tells you that you need to go for an MRI scan. The next thing you know, you're being rolled into a machine that looks and feels like a...

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parkinson's, drugs, statins

Don’t Take A Gamble With This Parkinson’s Drug

Several years ago I told you about Mr. Didier Jambard, a French man who sued the pharmaceutical giant GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) after taking a drug called Requip for Parkinson's. He s...

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parkinson's, drugs

Beware the drugs that can mimic Parkinson’s

When Larry was diagnosed with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), his doctor decided to try a drug "off label" to treat it. There is nothing unusual to this - lots of doctors do it....

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omega 3, fish oil

Low-Dose Omega-3 May Reduce Epilepsy Seizures

We already know a lot about the health benefits of omega-3 fatty acids in fish-oil supplements - it can lower your blood pressure and triglycerides as well as cut your risk of he...

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