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Improves Memory

In psychology, memory is the process by which information is encoded, stored, and retrieved. Encoding allows information that is from the outside world to reach our senses in the forms of chemical and physical stimuli. In this first stage we must change the information so that we may put the memory into the encoding process. Storage is the second memory stage or process.

This entails that we maintain information over periods of time. Finally the third process is the retrieval of information that we have stored. We must locate it and return it to our consciousness. Some retrieval attempts may be effortless due to the type of information.

From an information processing perspective there are three main stages in the formation and retrieval of memory:

Encoding or registration: receiving, processing and combining of received information

Storage: creation of a permanent record of the encoded information

Retrieval, recall or recollection: calling back the stored information in response to some cue for use in a process or activity

The loss of memory is described as forgetfulness, or as a medical disorder, amnesia.

Sensory memory

Sensory memory holds sensory information for a few seconds or less after an item is perceived. The ability to look at an item, and remember what it looked like with just a second of observation, or memorisation, is an example of sensory memory. It is out of cognitive control and is an automatic response. With very short presentations, participants often report that they seem to "see" more than they can actually report.

The first experiments exploring this form of sensory memory were conducted by George Sperling (1963) using the "partial report paradigm". Subjects were presented with a grid of 12 letters, arranged into three rows of four. After a brief presentation, subjects were then played either a high, medium or low tone, cuing them which of the rows to report. Based on these partial report experiments, Sperling was able to show that the capacity of sensory memory was approximately 12 items, but that it degraded very quickly (within a few hundred milliseconds). Because this form of memory degrades so quickly, participants would see the display, but be unable to report all of the items (12 in the "whole report" procedure) before they decayed.This type of memory cannot be prolonged via rehearsal.

There are three types of sensory memories. Iconic memory is a fast decaying store of visual information, a type of sensory memory that briefly stores an image which has been perceived for a small duration. Echoic memory is a fast decaying store of auditory information, another type of sensory memory that briefly stores sounds which has been perceived for a small duration.[2] Haptic memory is a type of sensory memory that represents a database for touch stimuli. Itching and pain are a form of haptic memory.

Short-term memory

Short-term memory allows recall for a period of several seconds to a minute without rehearsal. Its capacity is also very limited: George A. Miller (1956), when working at Bell Laboratories, conducted experiments showing that the store of short-term memory was 7±2 items (the title of his famous paper, "The magical number 7±2"). Modern estimates of the capacity of short-term memory are lower, typically of the order of 4–5 items,[3] however, memory capacity can be increased through a process called chunking.[4] For example, in recalling a ten-digit telephone number, a person could chunk the digits into three groups: first, the area code (such as 123), then a three-digit chunk (456) and lastly a four-digit chunk (7890).

This method of remembering telephone numbers is far more effective than attempting to remember a string of 10 digits; this is because we are able to chunk the information into meaningful groups of numbers. This may be reflected in some countries in the tendency to display telephone numbers as several chunks of three numbers, with the final four-number group generally broken down into two groups of two.

Short-term memory is believed to rely mostly on an acoustic code for storing information, and to a lesser extent a visual code. Conrad (1964)[5] found that test subjects had more difficulty recalling collections of letters that were acoustically similar (e.g. E, P, D). Confusion with recalling acoustically similar letters rather than visually similar letters implies that the letters were encoded acoustically. Conrad's (1964) study however, deals with the encoding of written text, thus while memory of written language may rely on acoustic components, generalisations to all forms of memory cannot be made.

Long-term memory

The storage in sensory memory and short-term memory generally have a strictly limited capacity and duration, which means that information is not retained indefinitely. By contrast, long-term memory can store much larger quantities of information for potentially unlimited duration (sometimes a whole life span). Its capacity is immeasurably large. For example, given a random seven-digit number we may remember it for only a few seconds before forgetting, suggesting it was stored in our short-term memory. On the other hand, we can remember telephone numbers for many years through repetition; this information is said to be stored in long-term memory.

While short-term memory encodes information acoustically, long-term memory encodes it semantically: Baddeley (1966)[6] discovered that after 20 minutes, test subjects had the most difficulty recalling a collection of words that had similar meanings (e.g. big, large, great, huge) long-term. Another part of long-term memory is episodic memory "which attempts to capture information such as “what”, “when” and “where”.[7][full citation needed] With episodic memory individuals are able to recall specific events such as birthday parties and weddings.

Short-term memory is supported by transient patterns of neuronal communication, dependent on regions of the frontal lobe (especially dorsolateral prefrontal cortex) and the parietal lobe. Long-term memories, on the other hand, are maintained by more stable and permanent changes in neural connections widely spread throughout the brain. The hippocampus is essential (for learning new information) to the consolidation of information from short-term to long-term memory, although it does not seem to store information itself. Without the hippocampus, new memories are unable to be stored into long-term memory, as learned from HM after removal of both his hippocampi, and there will be a very short attention span.

Furthermore, it may be involved in changing neural connections for a period of three months or more after the initial learning. One of the primary functions of sleep is thought to be improving consolidation of information, as several studies have demonstrated that memory depends on getting sufficient sleep between training and test.[9] Additionally, data obtained from neuroimaging studies have shown activation patterns in the sleeping brain which mirror those recorded during the learning of tasks from the previous day[citation needed], suggesting that new memories may be solidified through such rehearsal.

Working memory

In 1974 Baddeley and Hitch proposed a working memory model which replaced the general concept of short term memory with an active maintenance of information in the short term storage. In this model, working memory consists of three basic stores: the central executive, the phonological loop and the visuo-spatial sketchpad. In 2000 this model was expanded with the multimodal episodic buffer (Baddeley's model of working memory).

The central executive essentially acts as attention. It channels information to the three component processes: the phonological loop, the visuo-spatial sketchpad, and the episodic buffer. The phonological loop stores auditory information by silently rehearsing sounds or words in a continuous loop: the articulatory process (for example the repetition of a telephone number over and over again). A short list of data is easier to remember.

The visuospatial sketchpad stores visual and spatial information. It is engaged when performing spatial tasks (such as judging distances) or visual ones (such as counting the windows on a house or imagining images).

The episodic buffer is dedicated to linking information across domains to form integrated units of visual, spatial, and verbal information and chronological ordering (e.g., the memory of a story or a movie scene). The episodic buffer is also assumed to have links to long-term memory and semantical meaning.

The working memory model explains many practical observations, such as why it is easier to do two different tasks (one verbal and one visual) than two similar tasks (e.g., two visual), and the aforementioned word-length effect. However, the concept of a central executive as noted here has been criticised as inadequate and vague.[citation needed] Working memory is also the premise for what allows us to do everyday activities involving thought. It is the section of memory where we carry out thought processes and use them to learn and reason about topics.

Memory failures

Transience- memories degrades with the passing of time. This occurs in the storage stage of memory, after the information has been stored and before it is retrieved. This can happen in sensory, short-term, and long-term storage. It follows a general pattern where the information is rapidly forgotten during the first couple of days or years, followed by small losses in later days or years.

Absentmindedness- Memory failure due to the lack of attention. Attention plays a key role in storing information into long-term memory; without proper attention, the information might not be stored, making it impossible to be retrieved later.


Much of the current knowledge of memory has come from studying memory disorders, particularly amnesia. Loss of memory is known as amnesia. Amnesia can result from extensive damage to: (a) the regions of the medial temporal lobe, such as the hippocampus, dentate gyrus, subiculum, amygdala, the parahippocampal, entorhinal, and perirhinal cortices or the (b) midline diencephalic region, specifically the dorsomedial nucleus of the thalamus and the mammillary bodies of the hypothalamus.

There are many sorts of amnesia, and by studying their different forms, it has become possible to observe apparent defects in individual sub-systems of the brain's memory systems, and thus hypothesize their function in the normally working brain. Other neurological disorders such as Alzheimer's disease and Parkinson's disease can also affect memory and cognition. Hyperthymesia, or hyperthymesic syndrome, is a disorder which affects an individual's autobiographical memory, essentially meaning that they cannot forget small details that otherwise would not be stored. Korsakoff's syndrome, also known as Korsakoff's psychosis, amnesic-confabulatory syndrome, is an organic brain disease that adversely affects memory.

While not a disorder, a common temporary failure of word retrieval from memory is the tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon. Sufferers of Anomic aphasia (also called Nominal aphasia or Anomia), however, do experience the tip-of-the-tongue phenomenon on an ongoing basis due to damage to the frontal and parietal lobes of the brain.

lignoflax is very useful for growing memory for both men and women

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