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Study: Reading Changes Brain's Connectivity

 
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tatee View Drop Down
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    Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 5:58pm

Reading Changes Brain's Connectivity, Study Suggests

The Huffington Post  |  By Jacqueline Howard Posted:   |  Updated: 12/30/2013 9:33 am EST


It's no secret that reading is good for your brain. But what actually happens inside your brain when you read a great novel?

Stories shape our lives and in some cases help define a person,” Dr. Gregory S. Berns, director of Emory University's Center for Neuropolicy in Atlanta, said in a written statement. “We want to understand how stories get into your brain, and what they do to it.”

Now we may have a better idea, thanks to new research by Berns and his research team.

The researchers took fMRI scans of the brains of 21 undergraduate students while they rested. Then the students were asked to read sections of the 2003 thriller novel “Pompeii” by Robert Harris over nine nights. The students' brains were scanned each morning following the nightly reading assignment, and then again daily for five days after they had finished the book.

The scans revealed heightened connectivity within the students' brains on the mornings following the assignments, and the changes persisted for the five days after the students had finished the novel. The areas with enhanced connectivity included the students' left temporal cortex, an area of the brain associated with language comprehension, as well as in the brain's central sulcus, which is associated with sensations and movement.

"The anterior (front) bank of the sulcus contains neurons that control movement of parts of the body," Berns told The Huffington Post in an email. "The posterior (rear) bank contains neurons that receive sensory input from the parts of the body. Enhanced connectivity here was a surprise finding, but it implies that, perhaps, the act of reading puts the reader in the body of the protagonist."

How long do the brain changes persist? Berns said in the email that it wasn't clear, but he added, "At a minimum, we can say that reading stories –- especially those with strong narrative arcs -– reconfigures brain networks for at least a few days. It shows how stories can stay with us. This may have profound implications for children and the role of reading in shaping their brains."

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/30/reading-change-brain-connectivity_n_4504566.html?ref=topbar

the study: http://online.liebertpub.com/doi/abs/10.1089/brain.2013.0166

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NARSAddict View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote NARSAddict Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 6:01pm
I wonder what books would qualify as improving brain connectivity? I guess Zane's novels ain't on the list.
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tatee View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tatee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 30 2013 at 6:21pm
Originally posted by NARSAddict NARSAddict wrote:

I wonder what books would qualify as improving brain connectivity? I guess Zane's novels ain't on the list.


according to the study, if it has a strong narrative arc then it would apply.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote liesnalibis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 9:36am
This can't be good. This is why when I think of something painful it can sometimes cause pain in my body. That ever happen to anyone else?
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (4) Thanks(4)   Quote purpulicious01 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 9:42am
Great research and topic.

Just another reason why promoting reading in schools, and making reading fun/attractive to kids is very important.  It makes me sad every time I hear a child say that they hate reading. 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote Derri Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 9:50am
I kind of figured this.

The human brain is so dope. God is so dope.

But with how degenerative our society is in terms of mental development and learning, we are limiting our human evolution at large.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (2) Thanks(2)   Quote trudawg Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 9:55am
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tatee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 9:58am
Originally posted by liesnalibis liesnalibis wrote:

This can't be good. This is why when I think of something painful it can sometimes cause pain in my body. That ever happen to anyone else?

just reading this comment made me think of a car accident i was in last year and my arm started throbbingLOL it happens every time.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote liesnalibis Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 10:01am
Originally posted by tatee tatee wrote:

Originally posted by liesnalibis liesnalibis wrote:

This can't be good. This is why when I think of something painful it can sometimes cause pain in my body. That ever happen to anyone else?

just reading this comment made me think of a car accident i was in last year and my arm started throbbingLOL it happens every time.


Yesw= I wonder what that is? Confused When I tried to google info on it I couldn't find anything. I think your mind can have a profound, instantaneous effect on your body. That's what I think causes stigmata, personally.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote tatee Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: Dec 31 2013 at 10:09am
Originally posted by liesnalibis liesnalibis wrote:

Originally posted by tatee tatee wrote:

Originally posted by liesnalibis liesnalibis wrote:

This can't be good. This is why when I think of something painful it can sometimes cause pain in my body. That ever happen to anyone else?

just reading this comment made me think of a car accident i was in last year and my arm started throbbingLOL it happens every time.


Yesw= I wonder what that is? Confused When I tried to google info on it I couldn't find anything. I think your mind can have a profound, instantaneous effect on your body. That's what I think causes stigmata, personally.

its called body memory and i need mine to go away.  its kinda like when people have phantom pain in limbs they no longer have.

for a long time after one accident i had, where i injured my back, i would have back pain just sitting behind a wheel of a car.  it took me a while before i realized it was all in my head.
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