What is the Stress Response?
The Stress Reaction
When we perceive a stressor, whether it be consciously or subconsciously, real or perceived, physical or psychological the part of the brain that is linked to the hippocampul system makes the decision via another part of the brain as to whether the perceived or real threat needs to be acted upon.Â Bearing in mind however that the threat can be conscious, unconscious, physical or even psychological, it is the perception that is important.
If the threat is perceived as such, the Hypothalamus steps in, this activates the body in preparation for the fight or flight. The nerve impulses are stimulated and the autonomic nervous system is then started up.Â The hypothalamus is responsible for this and gives us those characteristically fight or flight symptoms. It does this as it has control over things like temperature control, heart rate, blood pressure and other functions associated with the fight or flight.Â That fight or flight essential to our survival, as it warns us of dangers to us whether real or perceived so that we may act accordingly. Whether or not we are in a “genuine” situation where the fight or flight scenario kicks in, we respond just the same.