The human brain a spongy, 1.5 kg mass of tissue is the most complex living structure in the known universe. It has a capacity to store more information than a supercomputer and to create a network of connections that far surpasses any social network. This single organ controls every aspect of the body, ranging from heart rate and hunger to emotion and memory. The brain controls the immune system’s response to disease and determines, in part, how well people respond to medical treatments. It shapes our thoughts, beliefs, hopes, dreams, and imaginations. It is the brain’s ability to perform all these functions that makes us human. Neuroscience studies the brain, the nervous system and its impact on behavior and cognitive functions. It strives for a deeper understanding of how the brain’s 100 billion nerve cells are born, grow, and connect.
BRAIN VS MIND
The brain is an organ but the mind isn't. The brain is the physical place where the mind resides. The mind is the manifestation of thought, perception, emotion, determination, memory and imagination that takes place within the brain. Mind is often used to refer especially to the thought processes of reason. Your brain is part of the visible, tangible world of the body. Your mind is part of the invisible, transcendent world of thought, feeling, attitude, belief and imagination. The brain is the physical organ most associated with mind and consciousness.
A few decades ago the brain was supposedly fixed and unchangeable once it reached adulthood. Medical science has realised that these long held beliefs about the brain were simply medical myths. The Brain is plastic throughout life – It is constantly changing. Just like your physical body, it is now scientifically proven that the brain can and does change its physical form and function throughout a person's lifespan; and, just like the rest of our body, our brains require regular exercise. This naturally adaptive and organic change is known as Neuroplasticity or Brain Plasticity. It is a common term in neuroscience, referring to the brain's ability to physically change at any age – for better or worse. This flexibility plays an incredibly important role in our brain development (or decline) and in shaping our distinct personalities.
HOW THE BRAIN CHANGES
It is a physical process. Gray matter can actually shrink or thicken; neural connections can be forged and refined or weakened and severed. Changes in the physical brain show as changes in our abilities. Often, people think of childhood and young adulthood as a time of brain growth—the young person constantly learns new things, embarks on new adventures, shows an inquisitive and explorative spirit. Conversely, older adulthood is often seen as a time of cognitive decline, with people becoming more forgetful, less inclined to seek new experiences, more "set in their ways". But what recent research has shown is that under the right circumstances, the power of neuroplasticity can help adult minds grow. Although certain brain machinery tends to decline with age, there are steps people can take to tap into plasticity and reinvigorate that machinery.
BRAIN COMPUTER INTERFACE
Brain-computer interface (BCI) is a collaboration between the brain and a device that enables signals from the brain to direct some external activity. The interface enables a direct communications pathway between the brain and the object. The easiest and non invasive method is one which at the base uses a set of electrodes, a device known as an electroencephalograph attached to the scalp. The electrodes can read brain signals and communicate these to a computer.
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