Chapter 5: Consciousness Expanding the Boundaries of Psychological Inquiry

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  • Chapter 5:ConsciousnessExpanding the Boundaries of Psychological Inquiry

    Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009

  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Lecture PreviewUnderstand different types of sleep and sleep disordersDiscuss theories regarding dreaming and dream analysis

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Biology of SleepConsciousness - our subjective experience of the world, our bodies, and our mental perspectives

    Circadian rhythm - cyclical changes that occur on a roughly 24-hr basis in many biological processes (e.g., hormone release, body temperature)

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Biology of SleepBiological clock - the SCN (suprachiasmatic nucleus) of the hypothalamus, triggers our sense of fatigue (via increasing melatonin)Disruptions:Jet lagNight shifts

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009True or False?

    Extreme sleep deprivation can be fatal. (For example, if you deprive yourself of sleep for two weeks, youre risking your life.)

    FALSE. Although the lack of sleep could lead to brief hallucinations, depression, difficulty concentrating, and other symptoms, the deprivation itself would not be fatal.

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Stages of Sleep and DreamingMeasuring sleep - EEG, EOG, EMGStages (cycle through every 90 min.)Non-REM (no eye movements, less dreaming)Stage 1 - light sleep, may contain hypnagogic imagery, hypnic myocloniaStage 2 - sleep spindles, K-complexes, theta wavesStages 3 and 4 - deeper sleep, delta waves REM (paradoxical sleep) - stage 5, eye movements, vivid dreamingREM reboundMuscle paralysis (lack of = REM behavior disorder)

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  • EEG Waves During Different Sleep StagesCopyright Allyn & Bacon 2009

  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Stages of Sleep and DreamingREM dreamsMore dreams occur during REM than non-REMEmotional, illogical, prone to plot shifts

    Non-REM dreamsShorter dreamsMore thought-like, repetitive, and concerned with daily tasksLucid dreaming - experience of becoming aware that one is dreaming

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Disorders of SleepInsomnia - difficulty falling and staying asleepHigher rates in those with depression, pain, medical conditionsRestless leg syndrome - urge to move ones legs or other body parts while attempting to sleepSleeping pills and rebound insomnia

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Disorders of SleepNarcolepsy - rapid and unexpected onset of sleepCataplexyRole of orexin Sleep apnea - blockage of airway during sleepFatigue next day

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Disorders of SleepNight Terrors - during Stages 3 and 4, sudden waking episodes characterized by screaming, perspiring, and confusion followed by a return to a deep sleepMost common in children Sleepwalking - usually occurs during non-REM sleep (not dreaming)May include complex behaviors (e.g., climbing out windows, driving)Most common in children

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Theory and Psychology of DreamsFreuds wish fulfillment and dream protection theory - dreams transform our sexual and aggressive instincts into symbols that represent wish fulfillment and require interpretation Evidence against this: most dreams have negative content (not wish fulfillment)sexual dreams are raremany are straightforward details of everyday activities (not disguised)

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Theory and Psychology of DreamsActivation-synthesis theory - dreams reflect brain activation originating in the pons, followed by efforts of the forebrain to weave these inputs into a story However, damage to the forebrain can eliminate dreaming, even when the pons is intactDreams are fairly consistent over time (not random)

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009So, what can we really say about dreaming?1. Dreams are often concerned with everyday preoccupations, and they recur2. Acetylcholine turns on REM sleep3. The forebrain plays an important role in dreaming And why do we dream? Although we still dont know, there are many theories concerning the establishment of memories

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Apply Your ThinkingThinking generally, what are some issues with the idea that dreaming may be important for the establishment of memories?

    Dreams are often filled with fantasy, not just daily occurrences.When we are sleep- and/or dream-deprived we dont become amnesic.

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Other Alterations of Consciousness and Unusual ExperiencesOut-of-body experience (OBE) - sense of consciousness leaving ones bodyNo scientific evidence to supportMay be related to ability to fantasize and to become extraordinarily absorbed in experiencesNear-death experience (NDE) - OBE reported by people who have nearly died or thought they were going to dieNDE-like experiences can be triggered by stimulating the temporal lobes, lack of oxygen to the brain, and psychedelic and anesthetic drugs

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Other Alterations of Consciousness and Unusual ExperiencesDj vu - feeling of reliving an experience that is newTheories:Small seizures in right temporal lobeDual processing theory slightly out-of-sync arrival of sensory info from separate pathwaysPrior unconscious processing of the informationThe present experience resembles an earlier experience Meditation - variety of practices that train attention and awarenessWide range of positive effects (increased empathy, alertness, blood flow, immune function, etc)Correlation vs. causation? Does meditation change brain activity or do people with certain brain signaling patterns seek out meditation?

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Other Alterations of Consciousness and Unusual ExperiencesHypnosis - set of techniques that provides people with suggestions for alterations in their perceptions, thoughts, feelings, and behaviors Misconceptions:Produces a trance state in which amazing things happenHypnotic phenomena are uniqueHypnosis is a sleeplike stateHypnotized people are unaware of their surroundingsHypnotized people forget what happened during hypnosisHypnosis improves memoryHypnosis can induce past life and age regression

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  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Theories of Hypnosis Dissociation model - approach to explaining hypnosis based on separation of the parts of the personality responsible for planning from the part that controls memories (dissociation from consciousness)Hidden observer vs. flexible observer

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  • Hypnosis in Clinical Practice: Smoking CessationSome advertisements for the effectiveness of hypnosis in treating smoking are misleading and exaggerated. Still, hypnosis can sometimes be combined with well-established treatments as a cost-effective means of helping some people quit smoking.Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009

  • Copyright Allyn & Bacon 2009Apply Your ThinkingSuppose I was hypnotized, and the hypnotist suggested I kill my landlord. I immediately leave and kill my landlord. Am I responsible for my actions? Is the hypnotist? Why or why not?

    The murderer is responsible (though the hypnotist is certainly sketchy). Hypnosis doesnt have a large impact on suggestibility, and does not induce robot-like states. People can resist and oppose hypnotic suggestions at will.

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