CogniFit's Science blog: Common Questions Regarding Brain Plasticity

Common Questions Regarding Brain Plasticity

Brain plasticity is the capacity to change the structure and ultimately the function of the brain. This can mean different things to different people depending on many factors.

Your brain is constantly changing and you can affect how it does. Just as your body can get out of shape so can your brain. When you learn new things you are changing your brain for the positive.

To use a physical analogy think of this as doing mental pushups. Using mental training exercises helps keep your mind sharp as you age.

Many people have questions about aging and our brain. Here a several common questions people have regarding brain plasticity.

1. Does our brain really change? Yes it does. For example, as we learn new things our brain will learn and change based on what we feed it.

The same thing is true if you let it go stagnant. By not challenging yourself mentally you will find your brain changing for the worse. This is most obvious in memory loss.

2. Does age affect brain plasticity? It can, however older people can and do still learn. This is why it is so important to challenge old people mentally. I have seen extremely sharp elderly people who train using brain fitness exercise regularly and they are over 90 years old.

3. Why do we lose memory? Use it or lose it does apply to your memory. So does feeding your brain with fresh input. You will actually remember more as you continue to learn more.

Your cognitive memory becomes sharper and your thinking skills improve when you do activities that keeps your brain healthy. Even spending a small amount of time everyday on this can really keep your mind sharp.

4. What about decision making? A healthy brain is going to make better decisions. This is a skill that can be improved upon with various brain exercises and a healthy lifestyle.

It is common to see people make poor decisions as they get older. Driving an automobile is an example where risks are increased. So is forgetting things such as leaving an oven on.

These are 2 good examples of why it is so important to challenge yourself mentally as you age. Making better decisions is a big reason why brain exercises are important.

These are a few questions on brain plasticity and how it affects the changes and structure of our brain. As you can see we can have an effect on it in a positive or negative way.