Effects of Mental Functions on Body and Effects of Body and Physical Processes on Mind!
Psychology studies the human behaviour. This definition clearly indicates that mind has something to do with body.
It is experimentally proved that the body and mind are related. Mental functions and physical conditions interact with each other and hence they influence each other.
Our nerves and glands are mainly responsible for many mental functions like thinking, emotions, perceptions, etc. At the same time, our mental functions like strong feelings, emotions, attitudes, motives, thinking, etc. will influence our bodily activities and processes.
There are many ways where the mind and body are influencing each other. This relationship is a two way process. That is, the functions of mind affects the body states and vice versa.
Let us see some examples:
Effects of Mind/Mental Functions on Body:
(i) Motivation leads to many physical activities.
(ii) Unconscious motivation and conflicts give rise to many physical complaints and neurotic disorders like conversion hysteria, neurasthenia, and other physical problems like peptic ulcer, colitis, etc.
(iii) Emotions lead to many physical changes like increased BP, respiration, sweating, muscular tensions, etc.
(iv) Unpleasant emotions such as worry, fear, anger, jealousy cause insomnia, headache, dysentery, indigestion, lack of appetite, etc.
(v) Deep thinking and anxiety lead to physical fatigue.
Effects of Body and Physical Processes on Mind:
(i) Physical fatigue affects our mood and reduces our motivation, interest, concentration, etc.
(ii) Hyperthyroidism leads to restless mental activities and at times over excitability.
(iii) Hypothyroidism leads to lethargy and low intelligence (cretinism).
(iv) Constipation causes irritability and depression.
(v) Increase in blood pressure leads to mental over activity, irritability, tension, etc.
(vi) Stimulation of Autonomic Nervous System results in experiencing emotions.
(vii) Brain injury affects many psychological functions. At the same time well developed brain leads to the development of better intellectual functioning.
The studies on emotions and motivations have clearly indicated that the relationship between mind and body may cause some effect in both health and illness. That is, if the relationship is good it leads to health and adverse relationship will lead to illness.
If all the body and mental processes are working within normal range, the individual will have good health. Otherwise it leads to illness either physical or mental. Disruption in any one of the processes will lead to illness.
Recognition of the mind-body relationship has given rise to a new trend in medicine called psycho-somatic medicine. This branch deals with physical diseases caused by psychological factors.
In these patients the treatment should be given for both body and mind, example in case of hypertension, the treatment includes drugs to reduce blood pressure and also to reduce anxiety in the patient.