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ANS neurons are responsible for regulating the secretions of certain glands i. The ANS helps to maintain homeostasis internal stability and balance through the coordination of various activities such as hormone secretion, circulation, respiration, digestion and excretion.
The ANS is always "on" and functioning unconsciously, so we are unaware of the important tasks it is performing every waking and sleeping minute of every day. Acetylcholine Ach is a chemical messenger that binds nicotinic acetylcholine receptors to the postsynaptic neurons postsynaptic neurons release norepinephrine NE in response to this stimulus prolonged activation of this stimulus response can trigger the release of adrenaline from the adrenal glands specifically the adrenal medulla once released, NE and adrenaline bind to adrenergic receptors on various tissues, resulting in the characteristic effects of "fight-or-flight" The following effects are seen as a result of activation of adrenergic receptors: However, it may be more correct to say that the SNS and the PNS have a complementary relationship, rather than one of opposition.
The most common are norepinephrine NE and acetylcholine Ach. All presynaptic neurons use Ach as a neurotransmitter. Ach is also released by some sympathetic postsynaptic neurons and all parasympathetic postsynaptic neurons. In addition to neurotransmitters, certain vasoactive substances are released by postsynaptic automatic neurons, which bind to receptors on target cells and influence the target organ.
How does the SNS mediate its action? In the sympathetic nervous system, catecholamines norephinephrine, epinephrine act on specific receptors located on the cell surface of the target organs.
These receptors are called adrenergic receptors. Alpha 1 receptors exert their effect on smooth muscle, mainly by constriction. Effects may include constriction of arteries and veins, decreased motility within the GI gastrointestinal tract, and constriction of the pupil.
Alpa1 receptors are usually located postsynaptically. Alpha 2 receptors bind both epinephrine and norepinephrine, thus reducing the effect of alpha 1 receptors to a certain extent.
However, alpha 2 receptors have several specific effects of their own, including vasoconstriction. Effects may include coronary artery constriction, constriction of smooth muscle, constriction of veins, decreased intestinal motility and inhibition of insulin release.
Beta 1 receptors exert their effect mostly on the heart, causing an increase in cardiac output, increased contractility and increased cardiac conduction, leading to an increase in heart rate. There is also stimulation of the salivary glands. Beta 2 receptors exert their effect mostly on the skeletal and cardiac muscles.
Increased contraction speed and mass of muscles, as well as dilation of blood vessels occurs. Receptors are stimulated by circulating neurotransmitters catecholamines. How does the PNS mediate its action? As mentioned, acetylcholine is the primary neurotransmitter of the PNS.
Acetylcholine acts on cholinergic receptors known as muscarinic and nicotinic receptors. Muscarinic receptors exert their effect on the heart. There are two main muscarinic receptors: M2 receptors- acted on by acetylcholine, M2 receptors are located in the heart; stimulation of these receptors causes the heart to slow decreased heart rate and contractility and an increase in refractoriness.
M3 receptors- located throughout the body; activation causes increased synthesis of nitric oxide, which results in relaxation of cardiac smooth muscle cells.
How is the autonomic nervous system organized? As previously discussed, the autonomic nervous system is subdivided into two separate divisions: It is important to understand how these two systems function in order to determine how they each affect the body, keeping in mind that both systems work in synergy to maintain homeostasis within the body.
Both the sympathetic and parasympathetic nerves release neurotransmitters, primarily norepinephrine and epinephrine for the sympathetic nervous system, and acetylcholine for the parasympathetic nervous system.
These neurotransmitters also called catecholamines relay the nerve signals across the gaps synapses created when the nerve connects to other nerves, cells or organs. The neurotransmitters then attach to either sympathetic receptor sites or parasympathetic receptor sites on the target organ to exert their effect. This is a simplified version of how the autonomic nervous system functions.
How is the autonomic nervous system controlled? The ANS is not under conscious control. There are several centers which play a role in control of the ANS: Limbic system- the limbic system is composed of the hypothalamus, the amydala, the hippocampus, and other nearby areas. These structures lie on both sides of the thalamus, just under the cerebrum. Hypothalamus- the cells that drive the ANS are located in the lateral medulla. The hypothalamus projects to this area, which includes the parasympathetic vagal nuclei, and also to a group of cells which lead to the sympathetic system in the spinal cord.
By interacting with these systems, the hypothalamus controls digestion, heart rate, sweating and other functions. Brain stem- the brainstem acts as the link between the spinal cord and the cerebrum. Sensory and motor neurons travel through the brainstem, conveying messages between the brain and spinal cord. The brainstem controls many autonomic functions of the PNS, including respiration, heart rate and blood pressure. Spinal cord- two chains of ganglia are located on either side of the spinal cord.
The outer chains form the parasympathetic nervous system, while the chains closest to the spinal cord form the sympathetic element. What are some receptors of the autonomic nervous system? Sensory neuron dendrites are sensory receptors that are highly specialized, receiving specific types of stimuli. We do not consciously sense impulses from these receptors except perhaps pain. There are numerous sensory receptors: Photoreceptors- respond to light Thermoreceptors- respond to alterations in temperature Mechanoreceptors- respond to stretch and pressure blood pressure or touch Chemoreceptors- respond to changes in internal body chemistry i.
In this way, visceral motor neurons can be said to indirectly innervate smooth muscles of arteries and cardiac muscle. In addition, autonomic motor neurons can continue to function even if their nerve supply is damaged, albeit to a lesser extent. Where are the autonomic nervous system neurons located? The ANS is essentially comprised of two types of neurons connected in a series.
The nucleus of the first neuron is located in the central nervous system. SNS neurons begin at the thoracic and lumbar areas of the spinal cord, PNS neurons begin at the cranial nerves and sacral spinal cord. The first neuron's axons are located in the autonomic ganglia.
In terms of the second neuron, its nucleus is located in the autonomic ganglia, while the axons of the second neuron are located in the target tissue. The two types of giant neurons communicate using acetylcholine. Sympathetic Parasympathetic Function To defend the body against attack Healing, regeneration and nourishing the body Overall Effect Catabolic breaks down the body Anabolic builds up the body Organs and Glands It Activates The brain, muscles, the insulin pancreas, and the thyroid and adrenal glands The liver, kidneys, enzyme pancreas, spleen, stomach, small intestines and colon Hormones and Substances It Increases Insulin, cortisol and the thyroid hormones Parathyroid hormone, pancreatic enzymes, bile and other digestive enzymes Body Functions It Activates Raises blood pressure and blood sugar, and increases heat production Activates digestion, elimination and the immune system Psychological Qualities Fear, guilt, sadness, anger, willfulness, and aggressiveness.
The sympathetic branch mediates this expenditure while the parasympathetic branch serves a restorative function. The sympathetic nervous system causes a speeding up of bodily functions i.
The ANS affects changes in the body that are meant to be temporary; in other words, the body should return to its baseline state. It is natural that there should be brief excursions from the homeostatic baseline, but the return to baseline should occur in a timely manner. When one system is persistently activated increased tone , health may be adversely affected. The branches of the autonomic system are designed to oppose and thus balance each other. For example, as the sympathetic nervous system begins to work, the parasympathetic nervous system goes into action to return the sympathetic nervous system back to its baseline.
Therefore, it is not difficult to understand that persistent action by one branch may cause a persistently decreased tone in the other, which can lead to ill health. A balance between the two is both necessary and healthy. The parasympathetic nervous system has a quicker ability to respond to change than the sympathetic nervous system. Why are we designed this way? Imagine if we weren't: If you aren't having exceptional success, you may be ignored and feel unwelcome.
This can be discouraging for those who are struggling and I think the forum could be more useful if it changed its angle a bit, but you can still gain a variety of useful tips and strategies by reading what is posted. If you need help, then you really have to get personal coaching, which I discuss in the next paragraph.
They also provide private telephone coaching for the DNR program for a fee. I did two of these sessions and found this to be very helpful as well. My coach, Candy, was professional, kind and very competent. She did not waste any of my time or money on fluff conversation. She provided me with many useful tips and strategies that I was able to implement immediately that assisted me in moving forward with my progress. I encourage you to have a couple coaching sessions, if you are in the Dynamic Neural Retraining TM program.
Again, I felt this was well worth the money. The definition of mindfulness that was presented in the DNR program does not fit with my understanding and experience of mindfulness. The program implies that being mindful of symptoms and pain will increase them. That is not accurate. There is a very big difference between being focused, preoccupied and ruminating over symptoms and pain and being mindful of them.
When you are mindful of your pain and your symptoms, you can make them disappear within minutes. Being mindful decreases symptoms and pain. You can learn more about this in my mindfulness for migraines and mindfulness for chronic pain books, if this is an area of interest for you.
I also do not agree with the amount of exercise that is recommended. Recent research suggests that traditional cardio and aerobics are actually harmful to our health.
The body experiences endurance type of exercise as stress. We are genetically wired to respond most optimally to exercise that consists of short periods of intense exercise followed by rest and recovery. Our limbic system evolved with short bursts of intense exercise, followed by rest and recovery. Earlier in our evolution, we would face a lion and run from them.
We would lift heavy things. We would walk slowly for long distances. But we would never exert ourselves intensely for an hour at a time.
When we engage in a short intense burst of exercise, followed by rest and recovery, it tricks the limbic system into believing we have escaped the lion and thus the sympathetic nervous system turns off and we move out of fight or flight and into the healing parasympathetic rest and digest.
Therefore limbic system retraining will do better with this type of exercise. Being cautious with exercise is of great importance for those with chronic fatigue adrenal fatigue , because as I mentioned earlier, you probably don't have enough cortisol. Cardio or aerobics is counterproductive for those who aren't producing cortisol and will set you back. Exercise should be mild and gentle. The retraining technique takes 15 minutes to do and it must be done at a minimum of 1 hour a day.
In my experience, the 1 hour a day is not sufficient and it must be done to all reactions. The length of the technique makes it feel like a chore and it takes a great deal of mental energy.
This is very time consuming when you have lots of sensitivities to work on. Once I make a commitment to something, I'm committed regardless. However, many people have trouble staying committed to something that feels like a chore. You must be very motivated to remain committed. The length of the technique is just not very practical for the Universal reactor. The marketing for the Dynamic Neural Retraining System TM focuses a lot on the people who experience instant miracle cures.
Although, we can't really fault them for this, because this is to some extent a necessary evil in the world of marketing. We live in a society that expects and wants instant results, so to some extent marketing messages must give people what they want. This is true of most marketing. So, I encourage you to keep your expectations realistic.
Most people are not experiencing these miraculous cures overnight. It takes a great deal of time and hard work to rewire the brain. From what I see and hear from others, there are many different ways that people are experiencing this process.
Some people have dramatic improvements in days, weeks, or months. Some people are completely well or almost well within 6 months.
There's a good amount of people who must continue the program well beyond the 6 months and a lot of people have been at it for a year or more. Some people have no improvement at all. Additionally, instant miracle cures really defy the principles that brain rewiring is based upon - consistency and repetition.
Please be aware that I am only sharing my process. Your process will not necessarily be like my process. Everyone experiences the limbic system retraining process differently.
Do not let my lack of progress impact your decision to try the program. You may be one of the people who responds quickly. I will update this page again in a few months but here are the improvements I have seen personally so far at the 6 month mark in my limbic system retraining, which is July 1, However, there are a variety of things, like my bath soap, dish soap, laundry soap that has not improved hardly at all. Some symptoms do not respond to the DNR practice. For example, gallbladder pain is a common response to chemicals for me.
The practice often eliminates all symptoms except this. When I take all this into consideration it amounts to an average of about a total of 25 percent. However, here are some other benefits I am experiencing.
I am happier and more optimistic. Depression was not one of my symptoms, so it isn't that the program eliminated depression. It just increased the level of happiness, joy and hope that I experience in my life.
My son, who is an adult, used the program simultaneously with me and he felt that it made him happier too. We both noticed that it improved our relationship. We had a strong relationship previously, but this enhanced it more and improved our patience and compassion with one another. We are both more playful. It reduced some of the MCS strain that commonly occurs in relationships. My son had mild sensitivities in comparison to mine. It is challenging when two people in the household are doing brain retraining together who have different levels of sensitivities.
Since his sensitivity was much lower and he had a lot less to work on, he was able to move faster. I was crawling at a snail's pace. This sometimes created friction, because I often felt pressured by him to move faster and he often felt held back by me.
On the other hand, it was great to have someone to talk to about the program. I also feel I am a better practitioner and I am taking many of the principles into my work. I see change in my future in regard to my work. My conditions were at the extreme end of extreme.
The program brought me in off the ledge a little bit. Now, one of the first things you may be wondering is whether I really applied myself to the limbic system retraining program. I'm the kind of person who really doesn't know how to do anything half-assed. If anything, I always try to do things too perfectly. I applied myself to the rewiring process whole heartedly. I committed to it percent. I practiced the rewiring steps at a minimum of 80 minutes a day.
I never missed not one day. Most days I was working on it all day. There were days that I was doing the practice every hour or every half hour. Coming into this as a Universal reactor, it is a full time job for me.
It takes a lot more than just doing the hour of practice. For example, on days I am doing chores like cleaning the house, I'm doing the practice every 10 or 15 minutes. When the day was filled with woodsmoke or rain odors, I was doing the practice every 30 or 60 minutes.
I consistently challenged my pops, you won't know what this means if you haven't seen the DVDs and I'm not at liberty to share with you because of copyrights and privacy agreements. I sang, hummed and recited my proclamation all day long. I wrote it and posted it in the kitchen. My son repeated it back to me. I stopped watching the news because it caused me stress. I watched feel good movies.
Listened to relaxing music. Watched humorous videos and tv. I filled my brain with positive thoughts, images and behavior consistently every day. I smiled all day long. I recited affirmations of different kinds all day long pertaining to each trigger.
It takes constant reassurance for my limbic system. I practiced mindfulness meditation and deep breathing exercises four times a day, every day as well. I completely changed my internal and external vocabulary. I believe for some people it takes longer than 6 months to rewire the brain. It took me a long time to arrive at a high level of sensitivity so it seems logical to me that it could take a long time to recover. It can take people who have a stroke years to rewire their brain so it seems that the same could apply to other conditions..
For Jill Bolte Taylor it took like eight years. Although our brain trauma is different than having a stroke, it makes sense to me that it could take a long time. Hopefully, and probably not, eight years. I plan to continue rewiring for another 6 months or as long as it takes. I can clearly see that it is working in my life and I believe that I will continue to improve.
The healing process in rewiring the brain is not linear. It goes up and down like a rollercoaster. I have days when I feel like I'm going to be well any day now. Then I have days when I feel like I'm almost back to square one.
Then in a couple days, I go back up again. Usually after a dip and a rise, I rise to a higher point. I crawled at a snail's pace for the first three months, but things seemed to pick up momentum in month 4 and more momentum in month 5 and then even more momentum in month 6.
The DNR team describes limbic system retraining as peeling the layers off an onion. For me it felt more like unraveling a tangled ball of yarn. Sometimes it unrolls smoothly, then you hit a kink and have to stop and work real hard on it.
Then you move along smoothly again. It can take a long time to unravel a ball of yarn that has kinks. Sometimes when it's moving along very slow it is difficult not to feel discouraged, but I just keep moving and it passes.
However, please be sure to read my review of the Gupta program further below, as I am having better success with it. Also, be sure to read my improvement updates as well. For the past three months I have been using both programs. The Gupta program worked quite well for me the very first time I used it and it gets more effective each week. For about 6 or 7 weeks I felt like I was soaring along with my recovery, making fantastic improvements in both chemical sensitivities and fatigue.
However, I then had a few brief setbacks when I experienced a few high stress events and a brutal migraine. So my progress is still going up and down like a rollercoaster.
However, amazing things are happening with MCS symptoms. For example, we had a big wildfire this past summer. In the past, I would have to seal myself in the house tighter than a drum and wear a mask with the slightest bit of wildfire smoke in the air.
This time, I didn't need a mask at all, and only had to shut the windows. When the smoke was light, I was able to have the windows open for a short period. I had very few symptoms and was able to stop each of them with the Gupta technique. In the past, I had to wear a mask and couldn't go out of the house when it rained, or I would get a migraine. I no longer have to wear a mask when it rains and I went out shopping on a rainy day and even took a walk in the rain one day.
I must do the Gupta technique every 10 or fifteen minutes to keep a migraine from coming on, but even still, this was something that was impossible just a few months ago. I use the short and long version of the Amygdala Retraining technique to enable me to do all kinds of physical activity I couldn't do previously. However, this is very hard work. Although I haven't stopped migraines from appearing, I can turn off almost all migraines that occur when I'm awake as soon as they begin to appear by using the Gupta technique.
I can also achieve this with my own mindfulness technique, but I use Gupta to hopefully rewire the migraine process as well.
In my experience, brain retraining works best when your health and stress level are very stable. During my rertaining I experienced a significant setback on a couple different occasions from a chemical exposure and a very high stress event. I was in a very high state of sympathetic stress and couldn't bring it down, even with extensive use of DNR and Gupta. Gupta would take the edge off a little, but not good relief. I don't know about you, but I find it damn near impossible to engage in the required visualization and meditation when I am in a severe reaction state or high stress mode.
I still continued to do the rewiring during the setback, but it did not provide the relief it provides when things are less severe and more stable. My decision to do this was based on the fact that I respond better to Gupta and it is more convenient and practical.
It was too time consuming to try and continue to do both programs simultaneously, and I wanted to be more fully committed to just the Gupta program. All the improvements I made in previous months continue to hold and I continue to make more small improvements each month, but it is still a rollercoaster ride. Some sensitivities like rain, dryer exhaust, woodsmoke, and outdoors have improved drastically, while some things like food odors have improved moderately and some other things have not yet responded.
Plus, it all varies from day to day; some days are better than others. Sensitivity to fragrances in public are not consistent. Sometimes I have very few symptoms and sometimes I struggle.
However, I can clearly see that the rewiring is happening and that I am improving and this motivates me to continue. I plan to continue Gupta until it is no longer needed. I am not going to update this page again for another 6 months or so.
As of August I have been doing the Gupta program faithfully for a little over a year. Between the Gupta and the DNR program, that means all together I have been retraining my limbic system for 1 year and 8 months. I continue to maintain all the improvements I made in previous months and make more improvements each month.
I haven't had to wear a mask in over a year. I used to have to wear a mask quite frequently, even in my own house. So this is a major improvement. Fragrances when I go out and about rarely cause me significant symptoms anymore.
My physical strength and endurance are slowly, but surely, increasing. I can do a lot more physical activity than I used to, but it still requires lots of Gupta. My fatigue is still much more persistent and problematic than my chemical sensitivities. However, recovery is not consistent across the board. For example, I tried to move into a different house several months ago.
I kept my current house, just in case it didn't work out. I had a wide variety of symptoms in the new house that I did not have in my current house. I really thought I would be able to overcome them with limbic system retraining. I remained in the house for almost four weeks and when Gupta didn't work I tried DNR as well, but neither one of them would relieve my symptoms. The longer I stayed the worse the symptoms got. I tried to force my body to stay there, but it wouldn't have it, no matter how much I rewired.
The symptoms were completely resistant to both Gupta and DNR. So I had to give up and return home. One of the symptoms I developed while I was in the temporary house was severe head ringing. I never had head ringing prior to this. When I left that house, all the symptoms I had dissipated very quickly, except for the head ringing. It's been several months since I left and I continue to get intermittent bouts of head ringing for unknown reasons, that do not respond at all to Gupta nor DNR.
It isn't nearly as severe as it was in the other house, but it appears my exposure to whatever chemicals were in that house caused a problem that won't leave, despite the rewiring throughout the entire exposure. So, for some reason, there are some chemicals that do not respond to the brain retraining as of yet.
On the other hand, this temporary move required a lot of physical activity and it seemed to propel me to a higher level of improvement on the fatigue level and other than the head ringing, sensitivity to chemicals continues to decline. When I first started doing Gupta, I did only a little of the full ART technique and a lot of the short technique, because I hate the wording in the full version; it makes me feel like I'm being scolded.
Then for about six months I used mostly the full version to see if it was more effective. I did not notice any difference in effectiveness between the short or long version, so I returned to the short version only. I've been doing only the short version for the past four months. I also do the Gupta breathing technique every morning and the Gupta meditation five mornings out of the week.
I tried the accelerator technique again, but that triggers my sympathetic nervous system. I continue to use Gupta heavily on a daily basis.
I have not been able to make anymore improvements beyond what has already been achieved, but it works great as a management tool for symptoms. It's been three years now since I began brain rewiring, and I continue to maintain the improvements that were made initially, but it appears I am not going to improve anymore beyond the original 25 to 35 percent I achieved. Although this has clearly been a long process for me, I am very grateful for the improvements I have been able to make and it is well worth the effort.
It has significantly improved the quality of my life. I will continue to do Gupta, but I won't provide anymore updates on my progress, unless something miraculous happens. Please read my review of the Gupta program further below for more details on my progress with this program.
Immediately after I purchased the Gupta program, in July of , I received an in-depth email with a variety of information for getting started. Since I was already very familiar with limbic system retraining, I was able to immediately put these practices to use, along with what I was already doing in my DNR training.
His focus is quite a bit different than Annie's, and provided me with some insights that I didn't have and complimented what I was already doing.
In all honesty, I felt that this immediately began to make my retraining more effective and I began to improve even more right away, especially in the area of fatigue. I was immediately able to do some physical activities that I haven't been able to do in a couple years.
The Gupta DVDs come in a very nice, sturdy and professional case. The book and mind map are of very good quality as well. However, the ink and paper used has a significant chemical odor that as many MCS people already have noted, is problematic for many in the MCS population. Since I have been doing some retraining already it was not as problematic for me as it is for others, but even still, I had to watch the DVDs and use the book and mind map outside. It did produce some symptoms for me, but I was able to use the short version of the Amygdala Retraining TM technique that I learned in my first email to eliminate most of them.
I encourage you to be creative and find some way to view them. As I mentioned previously, the benefits you have to gain far outweigh any symptoms you may experience. Keep in mind that the symptoms will be temporary and they will not produce any long-term or permanent effects.
Make a commitment to your health and be willing to go the extra mile. Sit outside, wear a mask, or whatever it takes. The DVDs are very user friendly and I had no mechanical problems, which made viewing a calm and pleasant experience.
Let me say this I am very impressed with the Gupta program. It has far exceeded my expectations. You really get your money's worth in this program and then some.
It is very comprehensive and complete. He not only explains the techniques in an excellent manner, but he also promotes motivation, provides encouragement and support and most importantly, addresses the process thoroughly. Ashok addresses each and every aspect that may come up throughout your training process. He really left no stone unturned.
The manner in which he recorded these videos makes you feel like you are actually present with him. He has a great style, comes across as very authentic, sincere and warm, and makes you feel excited about the retraining. He inspires trust and hope. There is a shorter version of the main technique that only takes seconds to complete. This is my favorite.
Both of these are so easy and quick that they don't feel like a chore and it's practical for the Universal reactors who have a very long list of triggers.
I have been using the shorter retraining technique on numerous things and I am having great success in eliminating symptoms. I still have a long way to go, but I can turn off many MCS reactions in less than a minute to many things and I'm getting stronger physically. I use it all day long on everything that comes up to relieve symptoms and get energy for the task at hand.
Additionally, there is a powerful accelerated version of the main technique which is quite amazing, but I don't like it much. The program also has a powerful core meditation and breathing technique that soothes the nervous system and really makes you feel good, as well as other secondary meditations.
There is an excellent mindfulness meditation that is very effective. It shares many of the same principles that I have been teaching for years and have written about in several of my books. So, of course, I am a real fan of this. The way that he teaches how to do visualizations has been much more effective in helping me get in touch with feelings of the healthier self than what I learned in DNR.
He goes into great detail explaining what to focus on and how to magnify these feelings. It has also been more effective at enabling me to identify other issues that need worked on, and since the retraining techniques are short, it is very easy to work on them quickly. In the DNR program you are only taught to use the technique on symptoms. In the Gupta program you are taught to use the techniques on the symptoms, thoughts and stress patterns, which I feel is one of the factors that makes the Amygdala Retraining more effective.
The Gupta program also has a support forum and it appears to be very active and seems open to people who are struggling. I feel I have become more compassionate and less demanding of myself with the Gupta program, which really reduces my stress load. I often hear Ashok's voice in my head throughout the day saying, "it's okay, you're doing the best you can," "you can do it Cynthia," or "take more time to do the things you enjoy. Periodically, Ashok sends out an email newsletter that is packed with helpful retraining tips, as well as encouragement and support.
A problem I have always had with approaches that focus on positive thinking, is the labeling of feelings or thoughts as negative. So that is something I am still uncomfortable with. Labeling my thoughts or feelings as "negative" makes me feel like I'm being a bad girl.
I feel I'm being blamed for my condition. I feel like I'm doing something bad or wrong. Additionally, I don't like to label feelings as positive or negative, as all feelings and emotions are normal and serve a purpose.
So I prefer to use a different word in place of "negative" thoughts, like "not so useful" or "counterproductive. There are a few other concepts and words used in the program that feel a little blaming, so anytime I feel this way, I just reframe it into something that feels comfortable for me.
I know this is an issue for many other people with chronic health conditions. So if this is an issue for you, then I encourage you to try and find words that feel less offensive for you.
Ashok's amygdala hypothesis makes perfect sense and is fleshed out thoroughly. He is truly a master at his craft. I'm not sure that the pieces of the puzzle all fit together exactly as he feels they do, and I don't believe things are as black and white as he sees them, but I do believe he is in the right ball field and that he has a program that can certainly help us return to the desired parasympathetic state.
As I stated earlier, I'm not completely convinced the "root" problem lies in the amygdala. The amygdala is definitely involved and overactive, but something else may be in the driver seat causing the problem in the amygdala. Remember it was once thought that the hypothalamus was what set off the stress response system, then later it was believed that it was the amygdala.
What we know now is that it is the locus ceruleus that sets off the stress response system, not the amygdala or the hypothalamus. However, I supposed it is still possible that the amygdala becomes sensitized and is firing off on its own.
But I think it is also possible that the problem lies in the locus ceruleus. Some cases are associated with cancer and some are not. The link to cancer was first noted in  and confirmed by later investigators. The majority of cases of limbic encephalitis are associated with a tumor diagnosed or undiagnosed. In cases caused by tumor, recovery can only occur following complete removal of the tumor, which is not always possible.
Limbic encephalitis is classified according to the auto-antibody that causes the disease. The most common types are:. Since , following the publication of a case report of a year-old teenager of Indian descent from South Africa who developed subacute memory loss subsequent to herpes simplex type 1 encephalitis,  similar cases of non-paraneoplastic LE have been described, as has its association with auto-antibodies and response to steroid.
Limbic encephalitis is broadly grouped into two types: Symptoms develop over days or weeks. The subacute development of short-term memory deficits is considered the hallmark of this disease,  but this symptom is often overlooked, because it is overshadowed by other more obvious symptoms such as headache, irritability, sleep disturbance, delusions, hallucinations, agitation, seizures and psychosis, or because the other symptoms mean the patient has to be sedated, and it is not possible to test memory in a sedated patient.
Limbic encephalitis is associated with an autoimmune reaction. The diagnosis of limbic encephalitis is extremely difficult and it is usual for the diagnosis to be delayed for weeks.
The key diagnostic test detection of specific auto-antibodies in cerebrospinal fluid is not routinely offered by most immunology laboratories. Some of the rarer auto-antibodies e. Most patients with limbic encephalitis are initially diagnosed with herpes simplex encephalitis , because the two syndromes cannot be distinguished clinically.
There are two sets of diagnostic criteria used. The oldest are those proposed by Gultekin et al. A revised set of criteria were proposed by Graus and Saiz in The main distinction between the two sets of criteria is whether or not the detection of a paraneoplastic antibody is needed for diagnosis.
The syndrome of anti-Ma2 encephalitis may be clinically mistaken for Whipple's disease. Anti-NMDAR encephalitis is strongly associated with benign tumours of the ovary usually teratomas or dermoid cysts.
Anti-VGKC-complex encephalitis is most often not associated with tumours. Patients with NMDAR encephalitis are frequently young women who present with fever, headache and fatigue. This is often misdiagnosed as influenza, but progresses to severe behavioural and personality disturbance, delusions, paranoia and hallucinations. The disease then progresses to catatonia, seizures and loss of consciousness.