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A practical guide to understanding the cranial nerves as the key to our psychological and physical wellbeing. Drawing from the polyvagal theory of Steven Porges-one of the biggest new developments in human neurobiology-author Stanley Rosenberg explains in simple terms how the vagus nerve, in particular, has a strong role in determining our psychological and emotional state, especially when it comes to how we relate and react to other people. Anxiety, panic attacks, depression, social withdrawal, anger, and destructive behavior are signs of lack of proper function in the ventral vagus. This book offers self-help exercises that can help restore vagal function and make it easier to interact with others. Those suffering from anxiety, depression, panic, and trauma will find much that is useful here, as well as those with physical ailments such as chronic pain and digestive problems. Additionally, because the vagus nerve is a key regulator of social interaction, therapy for proper vagal functioning has great potential for helping those with autism spectrum disorders.