What Is Unconsciousness? How To Understand And Define Unconscious

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Freud used the terms subconscious and unconscious interchangeably in his research. Decades later, psychologists are still debating what differentiates the subconscious from the unconscious.

So, how can we learn to understand and define unconscious on our own terms? We’re going to tackle some of the most popular questions on the topic of the unconscious mind to help you understand this important cognitive function.

What Is The Meaning Of Unconscious In English?

According to the Oxford English Dictionary, we can define unconscious as: unaware and unable to respond to one’s surroundings. But ultimately, the meaning of unconscious depends entirely on the context in which it’s used.

Psychologically, the unconscious mind refers to the storehouse of latent, suppressed information not accessible to our conscious minds. Medically, being unconscious is a physical state in which you’re unable to respond to your immediate environment.

What Is It To Be Unconscious?

According to modern psychology, being unconscious is the state in which one can’t maintain awareness of the self or the environment. It occurs when a person completely loses their ability to respond to what’s occurring in their surroundings.

But is there another way to define unconscious? The unconscious mind could also refer to the storehouse of information we use on a daily basis without our active, conscious awareness. Our unconscious selves may have more to offer than we recognize.

unconscious mind

What Causes A Person To Become Unconscious?

There are a number of potential causes for unconsciousness, including:

  • Blunt trauma
  • Severe blood loss
  • Substance overdose
  • Alcohol poisoning
  • Low blood sugar
  • Dehydration
  • Hyperventilation

Unconsciousness caused by physical trauma or illness is a serious medical state that should be treated with the help of medical professionals.

Is Unconscious The Same As Sleeping?

Unconsciousness is the state of being in complete or near-complete unresponsiveness to external stimuli.

Is being in a state of unconsciousness the same as being asleep? Not quite. Sleep is a natural state for the body to reside in. Unconsciousness isn’t.

Are You Unconscious When You Sleep?

If you’ve ever watched someone while they were asleep, you’ve noticed that they can be woken by sensory disruptions, such as a car alarm or a gentle nudge. Some people sleep more soundly than others, but this is largely a product of personal physiology.

Are you unconscious when you sleep? No. Someone who is unconscious isn’t roused by external stimuli like noise or movement.

When people sleep, they retain a level of conscious awareness. This awareness is a byproduct of natural selection. Without it, we’d be entirely vulnerable while asleep and susceptible to attack. That’s why our bodies are designed to respond to stimuli, even while we’re asleep.

So, Is Sleep A State Of Consciousness Or Unconsciousness?

If sleep isn’t a state of unconsciousness, does that mean it must be a form of consciousness?

Well, not quite. While asleep, you enter a subconscious state. This is the state in which your conscious mind rests and your subconsciousness takes over.

Many experts believe the subconscious is the repository for all the sensory details we absorb during the day but don’t consciously process. Others believe the subconscious is responsible for our dreams.

No matter its role, the subconscious mind is what kicks in when we’re at complete rest. We may not be consciously aware of our surroundings, but subconsciously, we’re alert and able to respond when the need arises.

what is unconscious

What Does It Mean If Someone Is Unresponsive?

If someone becomes unresponsive, they may be critically ill or injured.

Sometimes, unresponsiveness arises from states of bodily discomfort, such as dehydration or low blood sugar. That said, unresponsiveness can also be the result of something much more serious.

No matter the cause, an unresponsive person will require assistance. Make sure the unresponsive person is in a safe place, then call for medical assistance.

What Is The Definition Of Unconscious Bias?

As children trying to interpret the world, we create a set of beliefs to define everything new that we see.

Unknown to us, these definitions persist in our memories and affect everything we experience as adults. This is what psychologists refer to as an unconscious bias.

However, by working with our minds, we can learn to identify unconscious biases and correct them.

As Jim Kwik, Author of Mindvalley’s Superbrain Program says, “If knowledge is power, learning is your superpower.”

Developing a Super Memory is a lot easier than you think. Discover the same tools that brain expert, Jim Kwik, taught Elon Musk, Brian Tracy and Google to boost their memory and speed up their learning. Sign up for his FREE Masterclass below:

How do you define unconscious after reviewing this article? Share your thoughts below.



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