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List the lobes of the brain and their functions

Lobes of the brain, either structural or functional play an important role in identifying our true selves and give us idea how we think, act and even how our perception develop.

There are four structural lobes and one functional lobe of the brain. Structural lobes include the frontal, temporal, parietal and occipital. Functional lobe is the limbic lobe.

Frontal lobe is a section or an area of the brain that is located at the front of the left and right cerebral hemispheres. It functions for cognitive thinking, shapes and determine personality, attention and concentration, abstract thought, information storage or memory, reasoning, planning, organizing thoughts, behavior, sexual urges, emotions, problem-solving, judging, motor function, motor control of speech, affect and inhibitions.

Temporal lobe, laterally located at the brain, left and right. It functions for long-term memory, categorizing new ideas and concepts, identifying and discriminating smell and sound from the other, for visual and verbal memory, speech, hearing and understanding of language and music.

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Parietal lobe functions for cognition, movement, information analyzing and interpretation, spatial orientation, shape and size discrimination, visual perception, recognition, speech, perception of stimuli, pain and touch sensation. It is located below the frontal lobe and above the occipital lobe.

Occipital lobe is positioned at the rearmost part of the brain. Its function includes visual-spatial processing, visual reception and interpretation, color recognition, memory and movement. 

Limbic lobe, a functional type of lobe located at the medial surface of the brain functions for affective behaviors, libido and emotions.

How does the aging process impact the neurological system?

As people increases their age, the body system decreases its normal function that may lead to many changes in structural, physiological, mental and emotional, as well as in motor and sensory systems. Aging process affects the neurological system naturally.

In structural and physiologic changes, gerontologic considerations include occurrence of loss of neurons, which leads to a reduced in the number of synapses and neurotransmitters that results to slowed nerve and response time, reduced cerebral blood flow and metabolism that leads to slower mental function, loss of visual acuity and hearing, as a result of degenerated visual and auditory nerves, degenerated nerve cells in the vestibular system of the inner ear, cerebellum, and proprioceptive pathways, leading to balance difficulties and overall slowing of autonomic nervous system responses.

Mental status changes over aging include delirium especially in patients who have underlying central nervous system damage or are experiencing acute conditions such as infection, adverse medication reaction or dehydration. Memory, language and judgement capacities still remain intact.

Motor alterations in elderly are reduction in muscle bulk commonly atrophy in hands resulted from reduced nerve input into muscle, decreased strength and agility as the effect of changes in motor function, and often has slowed and wide based gait.

Dulled tactile sensation due to a reduced in the number of sensory receptors, difficulty in identifying objects by touch and perceptions, confused about body position and location, decreased peripheral vision, constricted visual field occur due to degeneration of pathways, resulting in disorientation especially at night, confusion, anxiety, feelings of inadequacy, social isolation resulted from loss of hearing, decreased sense of taste and smell that contribute to weight loss and loss of appetite, feel cold more than heat and decreased reaction to painful stimuli, are some of the sensory alterations that occur in elderly that has an impact to neurological system.

Compare and contrast the sympathetic and parasympathetic nervous systems in terms of function.

Sympathetic Nervous System

Parasympathetic Nervous System

Bronchioles dilate for easier gas exchange.

The pupils dilate for wider vision.

Hearts contractions are stronger and faster.

Arteries to the heart and voluntary muscles dilate, carrying more blood to these organs.

Activates when a person is in stress either physically or emotionally.

Peripheral blood vessels constrict, making the skin feel cool shunting blood to essential organs.

Liver releases glucose for quick energy.

Peristalsis slows.

Perspiration increases.

Intestinal sphincters and urinary sphincters constrict.

Stimulates orgasm.

Dominant controller for most visceral effectors.

Pupils constrict and ciliary muscles and lens contract allowing for closer vision.

Blood pressure and heart rate decreases to save energy.

Oxygen circulation to vital organs increases.

Impulses from parasympathetic fibers predominate during quiet, nonstressful conditions.

Decreased clarity of thought.

Insulin secretion increases and tissue sensitivity to insulin increases to promote storage of glucose

Peristalsis is accelerated

Stimulation of salivary glands

Stimulates sexual arousal

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Research a neurological article investigating pathologic changes that affect motor control and those that affect the sensory pathways. Write a one-page paper summarizing your reading.

Many neurological disorders or diseases can affect the patient's motor control and sensory pathways. One of those is multiple sclerosis.

Multiple sclerosis is a chronic, autoimmunity disease in which degeneration of the brain and the spinal cord occurs. It is the foreign agents like viruses that alter or change the immune system, which brings about myelin sheath, a covering that protects the nerves, to be damaged and disappear. If more myelin sheathes and nerves are affected, it is easier the progression of interruption with functions which the nervous system controls. Some of these functions include memory, vision, speech, writing and walking.

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Visual disturbances including optic neuritis, memory loss, unable to concentrate, uncontrolled urge to laugh, limb weakness, balance and coordination problems, muscle spasms, numbness, loss of sensations, tremors, paralysis, dizziness, deficits in attention, judgement impairment, depression, paranoia, decreased sexual drive and gastrointestinal and urinary problems are some of the clinical manifestations of multiple sclerosis. Females, 20-40 years old, family history, being white and with autoimmune diseases are at high risk for developing this condition.

Early diagnosis of this disease is not easy, for which its symptoms may appear for months to years. Physicians, including nurses usually take note of abnormalities and deviations from normal through complete physical and neurological assessments. Physicians may order for magnetic resonance imaging scans to help identify brain lesions. Cerebrospinal fluid examinations may also be done to determine unusual chemicals or abnormal cells that point the presence of this condition.

Treatment for multiple sclerosis goals for the enhancement of the speed of patient's recovery, decreased number of lesions of the brain and slowed progression of the disease. All of these can be attainable with the use of medications such as corticosteroids and disease-modifying drugs, which work by altering the activity of the body's immune system. The nurse must know that these drugs do not cure multiple sclerosis. It must be taught to the patient that it only depress the development of new brain lesions and reduces the frequency and severity of multiple sclerosis attacks. Others include anticonvulsants, set of drugs that help patients control pain from the disease and beta interferon therapies that slow the development of disabilities may be prescribed. Resting, daily exercise, calming down, balanced diet and relieving stress are some simple management during home care.


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