Venting Your Spleen

What’s old is new again…again! It’s kind of fun when something that was in the public eye disappears and is then “discovered” decades later. This time, the organ is your sturdy, silent spleen.* There’s an old saying, venting your spleen, which means, basically, to lose your temper and vent about all the grievances you’ve accumulated. NPR has a wonderful audiocast about newly discovered brain-spleen connections. Your spleen (which has always been viewed as an immune organ) is linked to your vagus nerve. What’s a vagus nerve, you ask? Well, pretty much all of us recognize the stress system of fight or flight. The vagus nerve, in contrast, is part of your “rest and digest” system that works opposite to the stress (or adrenaline) one. Perhaps venting your spleen is a good way to calm down (especially if you can leave out the losing your cool part) – certainly letting go of badness is. Check it out and explore the inner you.

*We’re offering a Doc Gurley Special Offer – an Ask The Doctor Question (any question – your chance at the microphone!) to the first non-healthcare person (honor system – no graduate school transcripts will be checked) who can, in the comments section, tell us all exactly where your spleen is located! Be the ninth caller…wait, okay, make that first writer – and WIN!

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