How thinking affects feelings This material is also available in a PDF format: How thinking affects feelings [279KB]pdf Understanding that what we think affects how we feel and how we behave helps children and adults learn effective ways of managing emotions. As shown in the following examples, unhelpful thoughts lead us to feel bad and can stop us from doing what we want to do. Helpful thoughts lead to more positive feelings and effective behaviours. Neurogenesis: How To Grow New Brain Cells Adults can still grow new brain cells — neurogenesis — but what are they for? For a long time scientists believed that neurogenesis was impossible: adults had all the brain cells they were ever going to have. Now we know that’s not true. In fact, we continue to grow new brain cells into adulthood. The race is on to find out what these brain cells are for and how we can grow more of them.
Decision-Making and Control in the Brain Damage to the brain's frontal lobe is known to impair one's ability to think and make choices. And now scientists say they've pinpointed the different parts of this brain region that preside over reasoning, self-control and decision-making. Researchers say the data could help doctors determine what specific cognitive obstacles their patients might face after a brain injury. For the study, neuroscientists at the California Institute of Technology (Caltech) examined 30 years worth of data from the University of Iowa's brain lesion patient registry and mapped brain activity in almost 350 people with lesions in their frontal lobes.
Drug overdose epidemic to recede soon, study claims A study by researchers at Columbia University’s Mailman School of Public Health is the first to apply Farr’s Law on the rise and fall of epidemics to an outbreak that isn’t, strictly speaking, infectious in origin: drug overdoses. At present, more than 40,000 Americans die every year by unintentional drug overdose–a number that has ballooned tenfold since 1980. In a study of smallpox in the mid-1800s, pioneering British epidemiologist William Farr discovered that the rate and duration of the epidemic’s rise was mirrored in its decline. Using Farr’s Law, the Mailman School researchers project that the drug overdose epidemic will peak at about 50,000 annual deaths in 2017 before declining to a non-epidemic state of approximately 6,000 deaths in the year 2035–at roughly the same rate seen before the start of the epidemic. Results appear online in the journal Injury Epidemiology. On the other hand, the epidemic of drug overdoses–like most epidemics–won’t end by itself.
Building Brain Literacy in Elementary Students Practice Makes Perfect For many students, the brain isn't a hot topic of conversation. This is especially true for younger students who are still trying to understand the world around them, and are still far from developing physiological self-awareness of the very thing that gives them that self-awareness. But helping students develop "brain literacy" doesn't have to be a matter of dry science pumped full of confusing jargon. Neuroplasticity Contrary to conventional thought as expressed in this diagram, brain functions are not confined to certain fixed locations. Neuroplasticity, also known as brain plasticity, is an umbrella term that encompasses both synaptic plasticity and non-synaptic plasticity—it refers to changes in neural pathways and synapses which are due to changes in behavior, environment and neural processes, as well as changes resulting from bodily injury. Neuroplasticity has replaced the formerly-held position that the brain is a physiologically static organ, and explores how - and in which ways - the brain changes throughout life. Neuroplasticity occurs on a variety of levels, ranging from cellular changes due to learning, to large-scale changes involved in cortical remapping in response to injury. The role of neuroplasticity is widely recognized in healthy development, learning, memory, and recovery from brain damage. Neurobiology
UCSB scientists discover how the brain encodes memories at a cellular level (Santa Barbara, Calif.) –– Scientists at UC Santa Barbara have made a major discovery in how the brain encodes memories. The finding, published in the December 24 issue of the journal Neuron, could eventually lead to the development of new drugs to aid memory. The team of scientists is the first to uncover a central process in encoding memories that occurs at the level of the synapse, where neurons connect with each other. "When we learn new things, when we store memories, there are a number of things that have to happen," said senior author Kenneth S. Kosik, co-director and Harriman Chair in Neuroscience Research, at UCSB's Neuroscience Research Institute. Kosik is a leading researcher in the area of Alzheimer's disease.
Correctional Facility Substance Abuse Programs For many years, SMART Recovery has worked with correctional institutions throughout the United States to help provide SMART Recovery meetings for inmates as well as support meetings for those returning to communities. Depending on circumstances, your facility may choose either to provide InsideOut to your population, or you may choose to provide a “general” SMART Recovery meeting. Our FAST Distance Training Program helps prepare counselors, officers and drug court officials to facilitate general SMART Recovery meetings. Information about making the InsideOut program available to your clients is included below. SMART Recovery materials work equally well with male and female populations, work to lower recidivism rates, and provide a non-religious based choice in recovery, which is crucial to ensuring First Amendment rights are observed. InsideOut®
Eight Habits that Improve Cognitive Function Digital games are incapable of giving the entire brain a full workout. These digital programs can't really exercise the cerebellum (Latin: "Little Brain") and, therefore, are literally only training half your brain. These "brain-training workouts" are the equivalent of only ever doing upper body workouts, without ever working out your lower body. Although the cerebellum is only 10 percent of brain volume, it houses over 50 percent of the brain's total neurons. Neuroscientists are perplexed by this disproportionate ratio of neurons...
How The Brain Rewires Itself It was a fairly modest experiment, as these things go, with volunteers trooping into the lab at Harvard Medical School to learn and practice a little five-finger piano exercise. Neuroscientist Alvaro Pascual-Leone instructed the members of one group to play as fluidly as they could, trying to keep to the metronome's 60 beats per minute. Every day for five days, the volunteers practiced for two hours. Then they took a test. At the end of each day's practice session, they sat beneath a coil of wire that sent a brief magnetic pulse into the motor cortex of their brain, located in a strip running from the crown of the head toward each ear.
Researchers show that memories reside in specific brain cells Our fond or fearful memories — that first kiss or a bump in the night — leave memory traces that we may conjure up in the remembrance of things past, complete with time, place and all the sensations of the experience. Neuroscientists call these traces memory engrams. But are engrams conceptual, or are they a physical network of neurons in the brain? drug overdose Archives It seems as if there has been a lot of drug overdose deaths this holiday season, and although it’s not a nice thought to think about, the number of drug overdoses has been growing. Unfortunately, five tri-state residents will not survive the holidays due to lethal drug overdose deaths…. Read more In this article, you will learn what the signs and symptoms of a drug overdose are, and how all of this can be prevented with one simple step. In a recent article, we shared with you the signs of addiction, and knowing what to look for. Now you… Read more
Adventures in Positive Psychology A major part of learning to deal with our feelings is being able to label and identify our emotions. It can be difficult to connect with our emotional state if we don’t have awareness about the feelings we’re having. There are vast emotional states outside of just mad, glad, sad, surprised, and afraid, and being able to put a name to these feelings can help us recognize their occurrence. Psychologists Barbara Fredrickson, in her book Positivity, explains the 10 most common positive emotions.