Saturday, November 27, 2010

Our Brain

Our brain is a thinking organ that learns and grows by interacting with the world through perception and action. Mental stimulation improves brain function and actually protects against cognitive decline, as does physical exercise. The human brain is able to continually adapt and rewire itself. Even in old age, it can grow new neurons.

Our brains are crammed with a massive amount of memories that we have formed over a lifetime of experiences. These memories range from the profound, to the most trivial.

How does our brain remember things? Our brain is a complex organic machine made up of many complex parts. Each part of the brain has a different function, ranging from operating the automatic actions we perform each day, such as breathing and our heart beat, to allowing us to feel, taste, smell and hear. One of the most complex processes that the brain has is the ability to remember events and information.

Sensory Memory is the first type of memory that the brain uses to remember things.. If the brain thinks this memory is important enough to send to short or long term memory banks, if not it is replaced or forgotten. Most sensory memory only remains in thr sensory registers for a few seconds.

Short-term Memory is different, it lasts up to a few minutes. Once a memory reaches this area of the brain it has been processed into a more complex idea. Short term memory can come in two forms, regular and working short term. .

Long term Memory is where most of the action happens regarding the brain actually remembering things.This starts with encoding. Encoding is where the details of a long-term-memory such as smells , colors or information are stored in the hippocampus and frontal cortex then take all of this information and turn it into electrical signals that can be distributed to different areas of the brain connected by nerve pathways and synapses. One part of the brain may store the smell involved with the memory, while another part of the brain may remember a color, number, or even-emotion.

Synapse==How strong a memory remains in your brain depends on the strength of the synapse between the nerve cells associated with the memory. The more you practice or think about a piece of information stored in your brain, the more that particular synapse is going to be used., it will grow in strength, this allows the memory to be more vivid and clear in your mind. If you do not access the memory often it begins to weaken. This may cause you to forget or have a hard time remembering a memory that has not been accessed in some time. Synapse is a junction that permits a neuron to pass an electrical or chemical signal to another cell.

We need to exercise our minds continually to keep them healthy. Give your mind challenges, use the opposite hand to do things, reading, working puzzle books, these are just a few. Our minds are a great gift, lets put them to good use. I must apologize for being so windy again.


Kay said...

Sigh... No matter what the problem is, exercise seems to be an intergral part of the cure, hunh? I'm just not a great one for exercise, but I'll try, Margaret. I really will. My nurse practitioner has been pushing me to get off my duff.

Patty said...

I try to keep my mind working all the time. I like working word puzzles and etc. I also like games that have a challenge to them. I like to play memory games. Not as fast as a young person, but I still get it accomplished.

I've been crocheting so many pot holders and little Santa stockings that I have memorized the pattern and don't even need to look at the directions any longer. Getting some items ready for the Christmas Bazaar the noble circle Group is holding on Dec. 1.

Sun has been out all day, but still a little coolish around her. I just cut down my beautiful mum plant, the frost really killed it off the other night. Don't forget tonight on CBS, Hallmark Christmas Special will be on.

welcome to my world of poetry said...

This was most interesting Margaret as being an epiletic which is caused by the electric censors, I was intriguied by the memory information. Thanks for sharing this,

Becky and Gary said...

So much information Margaret. I love your writings. Your not windy either.. Post as much as you want.
Have a great week.

Joseph Pulikotil said...

Hello Margaret,

Very interesting and useful post. We have to exercise our brain to be alert and active especially as we grow older.

Best wishes,

Judy said...

A very informative and useful post. I try to keep active both physically and mentally. I think we all want to stay alert in our old age and know what is going on around us. I hope you have a good week.

Babli said...

I love each and every post of yours as you write very nicely with full of information. Excellent post. I always keep myself engage in various activities and try to be active. I feel everybody should be active in their life and regular exercise is very much essential. Specially when a person becomes old he/she has to take lot of care and should be alert.

dr.antony said...

That was quite a lot of information.You could mention something about loss of memory as well.

Anonymous said...

Great post. Thanks for sharing. I learn something new every time I stop by. Thanks for making such a fun blog to read.

Linda said...

So fascinating, Margaret!! I have to admit that I don't like to think about my brain in action because of the fact that our entire being is wrapped up in that intricate and yet fragile design of God that it scares me. Of course, our entire body is a marvel and if one thing goes out of sort, we are that close to our end. I've been feeling this way for the past 2 1/2 weeks, through a really bad virus that's now resulted in laryngitis. So frustrating, especially as we enter December.

I always enjoy reading your blog. Hope you have a wonderful Christmas season.

Destiny's child... said...

An idle mind is a devil's workshop. Yes, we must give sufficient exercise to our brain. But all said and done, too much thinking can be harmful too, isn't it?

A very informative post :)

Crystal Mary said...

When I first read the name of your Blog I thought you were a retired Australian Soldier as they are referred to as "Digger's."
Anyhow, I love your windyness...Lol
Keep it up.. leaning is good for everyone..I love it.
My own mother is 92yrs and has a terrific memory. She can recite a 3 page poem in story saga form. I cannot even remember my car number plate.
God Bless from Australia

Babli said...

You are welcome at my new posts-

Gigi Ann said...

I have started to try to keep my mind active by taking up the new hobby of trying to write poetry. My poetry is very elementary, but, it still keeps me trying to write a poem of some kind. There are many poet blogs out in the cyber world, I didn't even know about, the poets are all so kind in their comments and encouragement. I also read a lot of books, crochet, and try to keep the old mind working all the time.

Thanks for all your visits and nice encouraging comments.

Merle said...

Hi Margaret ~~ Great post as usual and our brains are so important in everything we do.
It pays to keep them busy - I don't like the thought of "Use it or lose it" so try to keep mine busy. Love word games and trivia and some puzzles. Even using the computer works as exercise and we can learn so much. I hope you have your Christmas shopping done as it is getting close now.
Take good care dear friend, Love, Merle.

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