Four Ways Backed by Science
By Jasmine Aguayo
When we can’t retain new information, our memory acquisition center, the hippocampus, is to blame. This structure is responsible for processing declarative and episodic memory, while also playing a role in recognition. Stress, inflammation, and disease can play a big role in how well our brain functions, especially impacting our ability to recall. If you are ready to fight forgetfulness, read below to learn about new habits that may prevent memory deterioration.
Multiple studies have shown that sleeping 60-90 minutes can help us to retain more information and improves our ability to continue learning more. Napping recharges the hippocampus by promoting memory consolidation, and immediate recall. [Milner, et al.]
Even though a short rest may seem insignificant, doing so can give our brains an energy boost by restoring homeostasis. A week of sleep deprivation can result in a significant alteration in metabolic and endocrine function [Sharma & Kavuru, 2010]. Research found that students who napped the day before performed better than those who didn’t [Milner, et al.].
The Melodic Pacifier
Stress can severely impact cognitive function. [McEwen, et al.] When it impairs our memory, it can affect our performance at work and school, as well as our social life. There are plenty of ways to reduce stress, but not all of them work to improve your brain’s performance like music does. Music is often less effective than it can be due to when it’s used. It must be listened to before or during a stressful situation for the best results. We will not reap the same benefits if we turn to our favorite melodies for solace after we are filled with anxiety. It’s a preventative not curative. [Thoma, et al.]
Music therapy primarily impacts the autonomic