Biological Influences of Sensory Adaptation

Psychology: Biological Influences of Sensory Adaptation
By: Tabitha Harris
American InterContinental Online University
June 22, 2012

The purpose of this research paper is to transmit a mental impression of sensory adaptation into words. A verbal account of three experiments associated with sensory adaptation will be documented and explained. Each experiment will contain an observation and conclusion. A description of the brain’s activity and interaction with the vision, auditory, touch, and taste senses will be given. Evidence of sensory adaptation’s association with each experiment will be illustrated. A comprehensive description of the sensory systems that were included in each experiment will be provided. The experience from each experiment will also be recorded, along with an evolutionary perspective on the importance of adaption in the psychology field.
Psychology: Biological Influences of Sensory Adaption
The gradual decline in sensitivity to a constant stimulus is what psychologists call sensory adaptation. In other words, it’s when your sensory receptors become less responsive to a constant stimulus. Because of sensory adaptation, we become accustomed to constant stimuli which allow us to quickly notice new or changing stimuli. Vision, hearing, taste, smell and touch are the five senses, each with its own sensory systems and receptor cells. For example, touch perception includes skin receptors separate for warmth, cold and pain, travel from the skin cell receptors to the brain and spinal cord.
Theoretically, each sensory system is a channel receiving information from the internal and external world, with sense receptors, which are nerve fibers leading from the receptor to the brain or spinal cord, which relay messages (it is hot) stations and processes to areas within the brain. It is when the sensory channel is stimulated, that we have a sensation that is characteristic of that channel (feeling of cold or hot; hearing a loud of...