the brain that changes itself - norman doidge - audiobook - 10 cds
A book of two halves, The first was fantastic, full of great science. The second was more subjective and had me very pleased to get to the end.
Cognitive Ease= 3 Technical = 5 Story = 2 Enjoyment = 3 Memorable = 4 Ronseal Effect = 4 Talkability = 5 Longivity = 3
Thoughts while reading
The Really Important Points
- The brain is not hardwired it is plastic and can be rewired
- Neurons that fire together wire together -Neurons that fire apart wire apart. Use or lose it baby!
- In very young learning attentional filter switched off so that just by hearing parents speak they can learn language
- Ways to stay young in old age - Increase plascisity. Learn a new language. As we become expert in our field by middle age and we live longer it can be 40 years since learning new task.
- Brain has neuron stem cells in Hippocampus which are kept in undeveloped form. This means that we keep renewing brain cells throughout our whole life. So old dogs CAN learn new tricks.
- When gaining proficiancy in task neurons increase in mind map…..but then each neuron specialises on smaller part of task and less neurons are used – they become more efficiant and less neurons are used. Explains the process of developing skill so well discussed in Bounce by Matthew Syed
- Introducing concept of Neuroplascity - the ability of the brain to rewire itself - thought of as impossible until recently
- Paul Burr y chica – Alice? Suffering from disease that means you think you are falling. Known phenom Oliver Sachs
- Treated by electrical signals in tongue and a hat – enabled a new way to balance – able to carry on after hat was taken off and as new pathways strengthened so the time increased until it was not needed.Repeated this with camera to blind people to allow them to see images. Astronauts gloves,
- Dad after stroke brother got him to crawl and play games like toddlers would do. 1 year hard work gave extra seven of walking and full life. Died heart attack 9,000 feet mountain. Autopsy of his brain after showed damage had not been repaired but that new connections made
- History of seeing the brain as having fixed locations for functions - experiments with rats and monkeys showed this wasn't true
- Barbara and Joshua and the Ruassian soldier with a bullet lodged in his brain
- Unable to understand relationship of symbols or things – can understand elephant is big and fly is small but not that elephant is BIGGER than a fly
- In 1950’s belief was that mind was fixed neurons couldn’t be replaced so you were either smart, average, slow or retarded. Compensation teaching method practised
- Fast forward program for autism and CI treatment for stroke victims
- In very young learning attentional filter switched off so that just by hearing parents speak they can learn language. Called "The Critical Period" Lose this as we get older. BDNF chemical that responsible for learning easily in the Nucleus Prim??
- Autism thought to be caused by overload of this chemical which causes unstructured learning and then early shutdown of Critical Period. Also helps explain epilepsy and hyper sensitivity as white noise and light can cause large amounts of brain activity
- Over 40% of people over 85 suffer from a form of Alzheimers. Can be 40 years since last learned a completely new skill
- Man who could never love and his dreams of not being able to find something tracked back to death of his mother at aged 2. Very long section on this takes us through Norman's treatment and the main "wailing like a baby" when he realised that he had never grieved before and this was the cause of his failed marriages
- Story of how man got addicted to internet porn and how that lead to only 2-3 hours of sleep and a loss of a normal sex life.
- Story of severely disabled man heavily into S&M and how all people into such sexual preference are damaged..