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Time Perception

Time Distortion

Home | William James's Idea on Time Perception

There are many things that distort time perception. Here I will list some of them.

Investigators have long suspected, based on indirect evidence, that the basal ganglia might be involved in time perception. The basal ganglia have nerve cells that primarily contain the neurotransmitter, dopamine.

Patients with Parkinson's disease have an abnormal reduction in dopamine within the basal ganglia and commonly experience problems with time perception. These difficulties partially improve when patients are administered a drug that increases dopamine levels in the brain.

Defective time perception has also been observed in patients with Huntington's disease and Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), two disorders commonly thought to have abnormal function within the basal ganglia.


Drugs can have a significant effect on our perception of time. Most notably, cannabis noticeably slows the passage of time, making minutes seem like hours. Actually, all halucinagens affect time perception to some extent including marajuana and ethenol.

Bodily Chemicals:

The two most notable chemicals in our body that affect time perception are dopamine which can make the passage of time slow, and adrenaline which, obviously, makes the passage of time seem to pass faster.


Tests have proven that the dramatic hormone changes that take place after smoking cessation can alter your time perception to make time pass slower