Wednesday, April 6, 2016

Butterflies in your Stomach?

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Almost everyone has encountered a situation that has given that uncomfortable or fluttery feeling in the stomach, whether it’d be during a first date or a big presentation. All of us commonly refer this feeling to the un-scientific name of having the “butterflies.” So why are we able to feel such a sensation in our stomachs?
What really is going on, is that you are experiencing stress.  Stomach butterflies are related to the body’s “fight- or- flight” response, which is the brain sensing a potential threat to survival. Signals from the brain are sent to the hypothalamus and pituitary glands, that both control our bodily functions Once the signal reaches the pituitary gland, adrenaline is immediately released into the blood stream. The autonomic nervous system sends a rush of this blood mainly to the brain and muscles rather than to organs that are “farther away” or non-essential (during the moment) such as the stomach. The reduction of blood flow may be the cause for the fluttery sensation in that area of the body.

http://www.mytimemanagement.com/images/fight_or_flight.jpgSo the next time you are taking a test or about to speak in front of a large crowd, just think that it is your body’s “fight- or- flight” response that is making your heart beat faster, mouth feel drier and hands being damper and shaky. It is normal, just don’t forget to take a deep breath. 




Sarah Ona (Group 3)
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http://greatist.com/happiness/why-do-i-get-butterflies-my-stomach


8 comments:

  1. I like this post. I have noticed a flight or fight response in myself in the past. However it's been at the last second right before the event happens and I have to make a decision. This is another time where it happens in a different a time frame. Butterflies was always just something I associated with some nervousness. Fight or flight response really does happen on many scales. It is a big part of biology and how organisms work.

    commented by Nick Michienzi

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  2. I find it funny how the body triggers the fight-or-flight response to simple situations like the ones you stated that have no real threat to our survival. I can understand the response if you are in an actual survival situation, but maybe we've just become soft over the years.

    Allen Currier

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    1. In one of the articles, this response from the body is equivalent to getting chased by a lion that wants to eat you.
      It is pretty crazy that the body's response to this situation is the same as being nervous to something as simple as taking an exam!

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  3. I've definitely experienced butterflies before but I'd never given any real thought as to what causes them or why. I personally hate heights and I've noticed the feeling then but, as someone above mentioned, it's interesting that other things like nervousness before a big test or something can trigger the same effect even though it isn't really a life threatening or dangerous situation.

    Cole DiStasio (group 1)

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    1. Before reading this article, I had no idea it was a survival response from the body. I thought this "butterfly" feeling was something all by itself that was just expected to happen when I was nervous.

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  4. I never knew that stress is what caused butterflies. I used to get butterflies right before a big lacrosse game in high school and now it makes sense that it was just my body's response to my nervousness. I never put much thought into the sensation but it's pretty interesting to know why I had them!

    Emily Mueller (Group 2)

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  5. Thats so interesting! I never knew that was what the butterfly feeling really was. Thinking about how i get the butterflies before presenting something in front of a big group of people makes sense because I'm stressed about doing my best, but I think its funny that I also get butterflies won a roller coaster so something that I think of as fun is actually causing my body enough stress to feel these butterflies! Awesome post!
    -Kelsey Morrison (group 2)

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  6. It's interesting to think that every time I have butterflies in my stomach, my body senses a potential threat to my survival, but in reality I could just be nervous about something so insignificant. I feel as though I experience butterflies more often the not. I'm interested in how we can use this adrenaline to perform when we're not in a life or death situation.

    -Mahder Haile(1)

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