Saturday, August 13, 2022

What Part Of The Brain Controls Long Term Memory

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How Cells In The Memory Work

Long term memory in the brain – Intro to Psychology

Neurons, or nerve cells, are what most people call brain cells. Neurons are not like other cells. They do not divide, and if they die, they are not replaced. On average the human brain has over 100 billion neurons or brain cells.

These brain cells communicate with one another through synaptic connectors, sometimes referred to as synapses. There are over a trillion synapses in the brain that communicate information between neurons. With this complex system, it is estimated that humans have a memory capacity of anywhere between one and 1,000 terabytes worth of data.

When you are encoding or retrieving information from your memory, the neurons work together through the synapses to allow the process. It is electrical as well as electrochemical, with chemicals like dopamine and serotonin having an impact on how the neurons communicate.

What Kind Of Computer Is This

The types of mental representation discussed above, such as the continuous monitoring of the spatial surround by the parietal lobes, illustrate a vital point that is often overlooked when comparisons are made between the human brain and the computer. The fact is that the human brainor the brain of many other animalsis solving quite difficult computational problems at every moment, just in seeing, recognizing a voice, or moving in a coordinated fashion on four limbs, or two limbs, or two wings. Most of these problems are so complex that they have yet to be formulated in explicit terms by computer scientists, which is why machines that can perceive and move and communicate as animals doand perform all these functions at onceare still largely the stuff of science fiction.

Of course, organization is crucial to managing such a vast resource, and the brain exhibits this feature at several levels, as discussed throughout this book. Research conducted on the simpler nervous system of invertebrates, as well as on nonhuman primates, other vertebrates, and humans, has indicated how learning brings about structural changes in nerve cells and how the neurons in turn form regions, which take part in networks. The networks are organized into distributed systems, which collaborate with other systems, both sensory and associative, to produce the total working effect.

The Cell Structure Of The Brain

The brain is made up of two types of cells: neurons and glial cells, also known as neuroglia or glia. The neuron is responsible for sending and receiving nerve impulses or signals. Glial cells are non-neuronal cells that provide support and nutrition, maintain homeostasis, form myelin and facilitate signal transmission in the nervous system. In the human brain, glial cells outnumber neurons by about 50 to one. Glial cells are the most common cells found in primary brain tumors.

When a person is diagnosed with a brain tumor, a biopsy may be done, in which tissue is removed from the tumor for identification purposes by a pathologist. Pathologists identify the type of cells that are present in this brain tissue, and brain tumors are named based on this association. The type of brain tumor and cells involved impact patient prognosis and treatment.

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What Part Of The Brain Is Short

The area of short-term memory is located in the lowerpart of the temporal lobe and is of great importance for the temporary storage of an event, before it is eventually and lastinglypreserved.

Thetemporal area is part of the limbic system

The temporal area of short-term memory is an integral part of a region located inside the cerebral hemispheres: the limbic system .

Anatomy of the limbic system

  • 1. Entorhinal cortex: it acts as an intermediary between the hippocampus and the cortex.
  • 2. Hippocampus: it transforms a specific and recent event into a new memory. It therefore makes it possible to permanently remember specific information or events.
  • 3. Amygdala Involved in emotional memory . Also involved in social behavior.
  • 4. Mammilary bodies, involved in controlling mood.
  • 5. Cingulate gyrus: controls behavior.
  • 6. Septum: it moderates the emotions.
  • 7. Thalamus: it makes the link between the cortex and the limbic system . It is involved in episodic memory.

Many studies have looked at the role of twostructures present in this area and closely linked to memory: the hippocampusand the entorhinal cortex.

The hippocampus and the entorhinal cortex areparticularly vulnerable to the effects of aging, since damage to these twostructures is observed in older people with mild cognitive impairment orAlzheimers disease. There is therefore a link of cause andeffect .

More Details About The Lobes Of The Brain


Temporal lobes

The temporal lobes are on either side of the brain, nearest to the ears. Their main roles involve memory processing, hearing and language.

Both temporal lobes store general knowledge. General knowledge is different from the types of memory that relate to day-to-day experiences. The left temporal lobe helps to understand language, and usually stores facts and the meanings of words. The right temporal lobe deals with visual information, such as recognising familiar objects and faces.

Within each temporal lobe is a region called the hippocampus, which processes memories to allow them to be stored and found when needed. Damage to the hippocampus makes it difficult to learn new things. The hippocampus also sends important information to be stored in other parts of the cerebral cortex. It is important for memory of events and experiences .

The temporal lobes also help to understand what is being heard. Damage to the temporal lobes, particularly to an area called the auditory cortex, can make it more difficult for the hippocampus to form memories of what has just been heard.

Alzheimers disease often starts in and around the hippocampus, before it spreads to other parts of the brain. This is why one of the first symptoms many people notice is memory loss.

Frontal lobes

In other types of dementia, such as Alzheimers disease, dementia with Lewy bodies and vascular dementia, the frontal lobes tend to be damaged later on.

Parietal lobes

Occipital lobes

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Cerebellum & The Prefrontal Cortex

The cerebellum and the prefrontal cortex are linked together in some way, and both also seem to be parts of the brain which help control memories.

Now, whereas the hippocampus is responsible for the creation and remembering of explicit memories, the cerebellum and the prefrontal cortex appear to play a large role in forming and keeping implicit memories, things such as procedural memory, motor learning, and classical conditioning. It is also thought that both of these parts of the brain play a big role in the way in which memories are recalled.

What Is Second Brain In Human Body

Because the enteric nervous system relies on the same type of neurons and neurotransmitters that are found in the central nervous system, some medical experts call it our second brain. The second brain in our gut, in communication with the brain in our head, plays a key role in certain diseases in our bodies and in …

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Memories Are Triggered By Senses

We now know that the memory comprises of several chunks of information. The more the sense and emotions involved, the easier it will be to access the memory. In the film Ratatouille, when Remy feeds Ratatouille to Anton, the critic gets a flashback of his mother. It shows Anton as a child, eating the same dish that was made by her mother.

This is a clear depiction of how memory works. The taste of a sensory trigger brought the memory of Anton’s mother. Thus, consciousness is based on several such connections. Similarly, a smell of perfume or a song can also take you to a trip down the memory lane because sensory stimuli are involved in accessing a certain memory.

The Horrors Of Dementia

Short term or working memory in the brain – Intro to Psychology

Dementia is often commonly regarded as a disease. The truth is dementia is not a disease it is a group of several symptoms caused by some brain-related disorder. Although speech and language could also be affected, memory loss is relatively common in people with dementia. Stroke and Alzheimers disease can lead to dementia. The brain activity, including the normal process of memory-making and accessing, is disrupted. The neurons degenerate, causing the symptoms of memory loss. Type of damage can vary with the kind of dementia and other condition.

The memory loss due to aging is different from this. Unlike skin cell that regenerates themselves regularly, nerve cells do not. This means that with the normal process of aging, they will degrade. The amount of neurotransmitter will also decrease. This can lead to the loss of specific memories.

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How Are Memories Formed

  • Learning & Memory
  • The brain simmers with activity. Different groups of neurons , responsible for different thoughts or perceptions, drift in and out of action.

    Memory is the reactivation of a specific group of neurons, formed from persistent changes in the strength of connections between neurons. But what allows a specific combination of neurons to be reactivated over any other combination of neurons?

    The answer is synaptic plasticity. This term describes the persistent changes in the strength of connections called synapses between brain cells. These connections can be made stronger or weaker depending on when and how often they have been activated in the past. Active connections tend to get stronger, whereas those that arent used get weaker and can eventually disappear entirely.

    A connection between two neurons becomes stronger when neuron A consistently activates neuron B, making it fire an action potential , and the connection gets weaker if neuron A consistently fails to make neuron B fire a spike. Lasting increases and decreases in synaptic strength are called long-term potentiation and long-term depression .

    So What Part Of The Brain Controls Short

    Until now, it has been thought that the human brain uses different mechanisms to form long-term memories and short-term memories. This theory, however, has just been challenged by the results of research conducted by scientists at University College London .

    According to a UCL statement, neuroscientists formulated the first theory based on observations made with patients with amnesia, a disorder that affects the ability to form long-term memories.

    Normally, amnesia is caused by damage to a region of the brain called the hippocampus. This region, which is located in the temporal lobes, is known to be involved in long-term memory, spatial memory, and physical movement. It is also one of the first areas affected by Alzheimers disease, the symptoms of which are memory deficiencies and disorientation.

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    Ventricles And Cerebrospinal Fluid

    Deep in the brain are four open areas with passageways between them. They also open into the central spinal canal and the area beneath arachnoid layer of the meninges.

    The ventricles manufacture cerebrospinal fluid, or CSF, a watery fluid that circulates in and around the ventricles and the spinal cord, and between the meninges. CSF surrounds and cushions the spinal cord and brain, washes out waste and impurities, and delivers nutrients.

    Long Term Vs Short Term Memories

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    If we try to look into the depth of what memories are there can be two types. Based on the time limit, memories can be broadly classified into long and short-termed memories.

    Short Term Memory

    A short-term memory has the time span ranging from seconds to a few minutes. They are stored temporarily and then either get to the long-term memory storage, or they are discarded. Let us say someone gives us the mobile number. As the number is new so our memory will retain it for the short term. There are the possible chances that we are going to forget about this number after few moments.

    Long Term Memory

    These are the memories stored in the brain over a more extended period. They are several short-term memories organized to form a long memory that is stored permanently. Depending upon the importance and number of recalls, it can fade or be remembered forever. For example, you can recall your 18th birthday but not what you ate on Monday three weeks ago.

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    S Of The Brain Involved In Memory

    Memory is a complex function that involves multiple steps, starting with the input of the stimulus to the brain and ending with independent memory retrieval. Georgia Tech states that human memory is made up of three basic stages: sensory memory, where information is derived from touch visual or aural short-term memory and long-term memory. The different steps in memory retention take place throughout the brain.

    Which Parts Of The Brain Affect Memory

    The brain is extremely complex, and researchers are constantly learning more about how it functions. More and more studies are done every year trying to discover more information about how the brain works, particularly about memory. A lot is known, but still, more is left to be discovered.

    When faced with memory disorders or memory loss, it can be helpful to have an understanding of how the brain manipulates memory. Especially in cases of head injury, knowing which parts of the brain affect memory can help you understand what to expect in the future. Unfortunately, the brain cells responsible for memory cannot be replaced, which means that most memory loss is permanent.

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    Memories Shape Our Perception And Reality

    Everything we are and everything we will ever be is all dependent on memory. Human belief systems, perceptions, and learning are all memory related. Our consciousness is the ultimate reality of us as people with personality and preferences. Memories define actions, and actions are what we become.

    Suppose you think racism was not real. But you came across literature contradicting the idea. Your perception said that it was right. So, you committed the new information to your memory. Based on which you acted differently than before. Had it not because of the mind, you might have stuck to your old beliefs.

    The World In The Front Of The Brain

    Brain Rule # 5 and 6 Short and Long Term Memory

    Short-term and long-term memory are not the only forms in which the brain stores information. All the time that the five senses are operating, the brain is assembling and sorting perceptions of the outside world, directing some to conscious attention and collecting others into a set of perpetually updated mental representations. Although we may seldom be aware of the full extent of these mental representations, or examine them directly, nevertheless, they hold great importance for our thought processes and our ability to carry out the simplest planned action or predictive step, even something as elementary as following a fast-moving target with our eyes. These mental representations are the data on which we base cognitionour thoughts, ideas, and abstract mental processes.

    Animals, too, form complex mental representations of the world, which are shaped by their own brain structure and ecological requirements. For instance, information gathered through the sense of smell undoubtedly plays a much larger role in the mental representations of a dog than in those of a bird, which relies much more on its excellent vision to help it recognize its kin, observe the territories of its rivals, and seek out food and mates. With such differences taken into account, the study of mental representation in animals can help scientists explain similar processes in humans, particularly if the neurobiology of the animal is also under study or is well known from earlier research.

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    How Memories Are Accessed

    A memory of the coffee you had with a friend last week, for example, could include the taste and smell of the coffee, the cafés interior design, the sound of an ambulances siren as it drove past, and the topics of conversation you discussed. These components of your experience would have activated various parts of your neocortex. But the episode itself would initially be stored in the hippocampus. Over time this memory is consolidated, with its long-term storage thought to be distributed in different parts of the neocortex.

    According to one popular theory, the hippocampus is critical, serving as a memory index. To use an analogy: when functioning well, memory is like a digital database or an old-school-style office filing cabinet: something triggers a search of the database, and we retrieve and recall the memory.

    This idea of memory indexing and recollection is still only a theory.

    Functions Of The Frontal Lobe

    The frontal lobe plays a key role in future planning, including self-management and decision-making.

    People with frontal lobe damage often struggle with gathering information, remembering previous experiences, and making decisions based on this input.

    Some of the many other functions the frontal lobe plays in daily functions include:

    One of the most infamous frontal lobe injuries happened to railroad worker Phineas Gage.

    Gage survived after a railroad spike impaled a portion of his frontal lobe. Though Gage survived, he lost his eye and much of his personality.

    Gages personality dramatically changed, and the once mild-mannered worker struggled to stick to even simple plans. He became aggressive in speech and demeanor and had little impulse control.

    Much of what we know about the frontal lobe comes from case reports on Gage. Those have been called into question since, however. Little is known for sure about Gages personality before his accident, and many stories about him may be exaggerated or false.

    The case demonstrates a larger point about the brain, which is that our understanding of it is constantly evolving. Hence, it is not possible to accurately predict the outcome of any given frontal lobe injury, and similar injuries may develop quite differently in each person.

    In general, however, damage to the frontal lobe due to a blow to the head, a stroke, growths, and diseases, can cause the following symptoms:

    • speech problems

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    Learning Recalling And Thinking

    The brain regulates an array of functions necessary to survival: the action of our five senses, the continuous monitoring of the spatial surround, contraction and relaxation of the digestive muscles, the rhythms of breathing and a regular heartbeat. As the vital functions maintain their steady course without our conscious exertion, we are accustomed to consider the brain as preeminently the organ of thought. The brain houses our mind and our memories, and we rely on its information-processing capacities when we set out to learn something new.

    But where in the brain can we locate memory or thought itself? offered some clues about the ways scientific investigationfrom the molecular level to studies of the alert, behaving animalhas begun to define in physical terms an abstract quality such as “attention.” Similar techniques and approaches are being applied to other mental functions, too, even those as seemingly intangible as learning, remembering, or thinking about the outside world.

    Learning and memory, which for many years were considered central problems in psychology, the social sciences, and philosophy, have recently assumed greater importance in the area of neurobiology, itself a confluence of several lines of investigation.

    Most available evidence suggests that the functions of memory are carried out by the hippocampus and other related structures in the temporal lobe.

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