Forgetfulness, distraction and “holes” in memory

Forgetfulness, distraction and “holes” in memory
Distractedness and forgetfulness have become pandemics of the new era, which is characterized by the influx of a large amount of information of all kinds. Memory and forgetfulness are actually different sides of the same coin.
The conditions for memory are not the same for all people – say psychologists and neuropsychiatrists. A good memory is a type of endowment associated primarily with intelligence, although it does not necessarily have to be associated with general intellectual ability. The quality of memory depends on education. It’s easier to remember everything that we understand well, and it connects what we remember with what we know. Example – a student complains that he does not remember the material well, although he knows the results of his favorite football club very well, remembering even the smallest details.
Interest arouses attention, and without it there is no memory.
People remember content accompanied by intense emotions better than indifferent ones. The goal of memory is to adapt to the environment as best as possible – according to experts. And forgetting has the same function, because otherwise the human brain would be flooded with redundant information. There would be no room for the adoption of new ones. Man would still be tapping in prehistoric times if he was not endowed with the ability to learn and remember. We forget what we know, while forgetfulness means that the person did not even remember what should have been remembered because the attention was focused on something more important and interesting.
The diversity of intellectuals (professors), for example, has long been the subject of numerous anecdotes and jokes. This is a strictly focused memory that can be extraordinary in a certain area, while there is no interest in other trivial things. Thus, the professor will mix the coffee with a piece of chalk while teaching the students the theory of relativity – the professor does not lose concentration. The same applies to a person in love who remembers everything their partner likes but can forget the rest (for example, day and date).
Distractedness related to automatic actions (for example, leaving keys, glasses, small things) can be removed if a person tries to manage his own attention without robotic functioning. Such dispersion occurs in all generations even though it has different origins.
The forgetfulness of the elderly is most often caused by neuro-physiological changes and changes in the conditions in which memory takes place. Billions of neurons in the cortex of the cerebrum and cerebellum (including a layer of 4.6 million cells in the hypothalamus) take part in the memory process. At the onset of some degenerative changes in the central nervous system (for example, dementia), the deterioration of all cognitive functions also occurs. Then you remember the events of the past and forget the events of yesterday, you remember your own identity but forget everything else, including close people.
Fortunately, such conditions are not an obligatory companion of old age. It also depends on genetic conditions. There are many cases where there are no degenerative or negative vascular changes in old age, so the person is completely intellectually preserved.
For the elderly, a kind of “brain gymnastics” is recommended for better memory
It is solving crosswords, intellectual work, studying, playing chess, reading. Socializing and having a good mood prevents possible depression, and learning and memory also depend on a positive psychological tone.
A diet rich in unsaturated fatty acids (containing fish, nuts, olive oil) is a great help for better brain function. Movement and regular exercise improve circulation. This is important because due to insufficient blood supply to the brain (caused by inactivity or narrowing and blockage of blood vessels) transient amnesia can occur.

There are also psychogenic amnesia in the form of a reaction to some traumatic events. These are selective amnesia: they relate to personal identity and traumatic experience, but not to general information. Traumatic amnesia as a result of physical injuries to the head are complete when everything that preceded the injury (including identity) is erased – they are often the subject of dramas and film scripts.
Complete forgetting can be a protective function of the psyche, suppression which is one of the psychological defense mechanisms. Thus, negative memories, images and thoughts are kept away from consciousness (because they would cause unbearable discomfort). Such forgetting is deep, so the repressed content appears only through shadows, neurotic symptoms and speech errors. It can be called by hypnosis. A person can remember forgotten content under certain conditions, but not repressed content.
People sometimes make mistakes in speaking and talking, they forget everything they want, because of which they feel shame, fear, guilt and the like. It is socially acceptable to clearly state that the person forgot rather than that he did not really want to. Freud also claimed “that nothing is forgotten without a secret reason and a hidden motive”.
Medicines that stimulate microcirculation and better blood supply to the brain also contribute to better memory. There are drugs with the opposite effect. Hypnosedatives (especially benzodiazepines) taken in large doses can cause memory disturbances or “holes” in memory. A short and fast effect of hypnotics (for example, flormidal-sleeping medicine) can have the same effect. Young people often manipulate this medicine and get into a state of confusion they yawn because they do things they normally don’t remember. Alcohol in larger quantities is the reason for forgetting what is done in drunkenness. The effect of alcohol taken with a sedative is even more fatal. Drug abuse causes a memory disorder, so the memory of events in the state of intoxication is hazy or the memory does not exist at all.

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