Coronavirus Pandemic’s Effects on the Brain
This is a review of a few scientific articles I have read lately about the Coronavirus pandemic’s effects on our brain, and what to do about it. Please pay particular attention to what it says about brain training.
The main article can be found by clicking this link:
According to a few articles in scientific journals,the stress associated with Coronavirus pandemic is causing changes to the hippocampus and amygdala. But don’t let that discourage you.
As stated in the main article: “The good thing about the brain, however, is that it is incredibly plastic, which means it is changeable and can compensate for damage”. Even serious conditions such as memory loss and depression can be improved by doing things that alter the brain function and its chemistry. The article suggests mindfulness training as part of brain training.
The paper looks at promising solutions to combat of stress, anxiety and depression—in COVID-19 patients and others.
The article further states: “We already know that exercise and mindfulness training—techniques that help us stay in the present—are helpful when it comes to combating brain stress. Indeed, studies have shown beneficial functional and structural changes in the brain’s prefrontal cortex (involved in planning and decision making), hippocampus and amygdala following mindfulness training.”
The article further discloses the following:
One study showed an enhanced density of gray matter – the tissue containing most of the brain’s cell bodies and a key component of the central nervous system—in the left hippocampus after eight weeks of training (in comparison to controls).
Yes, these are all regions that are impacted by the COVID-19 virus. Suggested brain games: …”gamified cognitive training can also help improve attention, memory function and increase motivation. Those who have persistent or severe mental health symptoms may require clinical evaluation by a psychologist or psychiatrist. In such cases, there are pharmacological and psychological treatments available, such as antidepressants or cognitive behavioral therapy.”
The article further states that these techniques are likely be beneficial to everyone, and may help us to better promote cognitive resilience and mental health—preparing us for future critical events such as global pandemics. As a society, we need to anticipate future challenges to our brain health, cognition and wellbeing. We should be utilizing these techniques in schools to promote lifelong resilience starting at an early age.
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