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Brain-Aging Myths

It is important to maintain a healthy brain throughout our lifespan as we develop, but we are often discouraged by brain-aging myths.  There are 4 common brain-aging myth’s: 1) You can’t change your brain, 2) We lose thousands of neurons every day, 3) The brain doesn’t make new brain cells, 4) Memory decline is inevitable as we age.  But, how are these myths?

You can’t change your brain. Plasticity of the brain is what allows changes to happen throughout our lifespan, well into old age.   For example, because we are at constant thought and not all thoughts are the same, our brain is constantly changing.   If our brains were unable to change it would inhibit our ability to pick up new hobbies or alternative opinions.

 

We lose thousands of neurons every day. As we age we aren’t losing a large amount of neurons, nerve cells, but instead we can lose concentration in regions of the brain.  This explains possible age-related psychological decline, such as loss of concentration in the hippocampus can be related to memory loss.

 

The brain doesn’t make new brain cells. While this was believed before, it isn’t true.  As a matter of fact, even our hippocampus produces new neurons.  Our brain can make new brain cells.

 

Memory decline is inevitable as we age.  There is more than age that plays into the possibility of our memory declining.  First, our genes have a role into whether we have memory decline.  We can also have control on our brain health by concentrating on successful aging.

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