With almost 100 billion neurons, each as complex as the Hadron Collider, the human brain is amazingly complex. The brain is a regulating entity routing instructions to multiple cells within seconds. Even a simple task like picking up a can of soda or drawing a circle can be considered a miracle with the way our brain functions. If you were to damage a brain tissue it would seriously affect your ability to feel different emotions, appreciate nature, understand music or see colors. Although the primary functions of the brain are well known to humans and healthcare experts, science is still not completely sure about the way we process thoughts, emotions and actions using this organ.
One of the way brain works is by directing the visio-spatial features and capabilities of a person. These relate to the way we perceive things and pick out patterns to organize and arrange them in a meaningful manner within a knowledge base.
MEMORY & LEARNING
Our brain plays a pivotal role in developing memory to help nourish other cognitive abilities like critical analysis and reasoning. The hippocampus in the brain, for example, is responsible for the formation of long-term memory in humans.
The brain’s capability to transform a specific experience into a relatable element to be stored for later leads to learning. The brain extracts feedback from the senses and stores the input as a code without any conscious attempt from our end. This helps us hark back to the experience to benefit from it and learn through a seamless process.
Did you know babies can learn two languages at the same time? Baby brains process the languages being spoken around them much better than adult brains. Scientists these days are working on investigating the different brain zones responsible for processing the language. The reassembly of these zones that process language information is carried out in different areas of the brain like the middle temporal, inferior parietal, broca and the wericke.
Once a word is heard, the incoming sound is stored as an electric signal and decoded by the auditory cortex in the ear where neurons pull out auditory parts from the signal. The temporo-frontal networks in the left hemisphere analyze the extracted parts for classification of words and match them with related themes. The analysis of the sentence by the right hemisphere is the final step in the process.
Emotions have a strong link with intelligence. An almond-shaped structure called the Amygdala connects with other parts of the brain, including the prefrontal area and thalamus, to mediate feelings like friendship, love and affection amongst others to direct our reaction.
The cortex or outer covering of the brain is responsible for motor planning or praxis that allows you to organize, plan and execute different tasks. The frontal lobes direct different behavioral attributes including impulse control, social adjustments and emotional reactivity.
With the range of functions performed by the brain, it’s no wonder that it burns 70% of the body’s glucose and almost 16 ounces of blood pass through the brain every minute.
What We Still Don’t Know About the Brain
Despite the recent advances in science and technology, scientists are still trying to grasp the concepts of neuroscience and its underlying mysteries. The coding of information, storage and retrieval of memory and the simulation of the future by the brain are still unsolved secrets that make this complex unit even more intriguing and fascinating.