Research, Technology

Scientists have figured out why bad memories are forgotten, but good ones remain in memory

In sleep, as you know, the brain processesinformation that has accumulated during the day, and organizes it. Information that may be useful to us, according to our brain, goes from short-term memory to long-term memory. The rest of the data is simply forgotten. But by what principle does the brain distinguish the necessary information from the unnecessary? As scientists have found, one of the factors that helps the brain make decisions is our emotions. It turns out that the brain remembers events that caused positive emotions better. True, people knew before that everything bad is quickly forgotten, but now there is a scientific explanation for this, which was obtained as a result of experiments. We suggest that you familiarize yourself with them further in order to better understand how our brain works.

In a dream, the brain remembers events that caused positive emotions better.

How does the human brain store information?

Researchers at the University of Genevaexperiment with several volunteers. Its meaning is quite simple - before going to bed, people were asked to play two games, each of which involved different parts of the brain. In one, it was required to guess faces from a photograph, and in the second, it was necessary to find a way out of a three-dimensional maze on a computer. Each of the participants won only one game.

At the end of the game, the participants went to sleep inan MRI machine that tracked which parts of the brain work during sleep and what phase of sleep a person is in. Scientists have found that in a dream, one of the main memory centers (the hippocampus) begins to interact with the brain centers that were active when performing certain actions during wakefulness.

In other words, the brain reproduces actionsdone before bed. At the same time, in some cases, the brain strengthens neural circuits related to a specific event, and in others, it breaks interneuronal contacts. A Nature Communications article reports that participants in the sleep experiment began to work the same parts of the brain that were used during games. Two days later they came to play the same games they had played before. Then it became clear that each of them remembered better the game in which he won. That is, what scientists were able to fix on the MRI machine was confirmed - the win, or rather the positive emotions that it caused, helped the event to remain in memory.

Mog breaks interneuronal contacts in order to forget certain events

From this we can conclude that for memory it is importantwhat emotions we received at this or that event. It should be noted that pleasant sensations can be different. During the experiment, the participants experienced pleasant sensations as a reward for success in some activities.

With these features of the brain, scientists have associated thethe fact that good things are usually remembered better. There may be more bad things, but the brain apparatus filters out such events. However, there are situations when a person remembers all the bad things. Scientists cannot yet give an answer to what this is connected with - either strong negative emotions, or a feature of the memorization apparatus in such people.

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Why does a person need to forget information

So, scientists have found that the brain triesremember information that is associated with positive emotions, but why the rest is forgotten. why can't you remember everything? The fact is that we ourselves simply need to forget some of the information, since an excessively good memory causes a lot of trouble.

Patients with supermemory cannotconcentrate on the present, because everything they see around them plunges them into uncontrolled associations with the past. A bad memory allows us to forget unpleasant events and even raise our self-esteem. But, even if you do not take into account extreme cases and emotions, an overly good memory still interferes with a person.

For normal operation, the brain needs to forget some information.

Imagine that you have changed your password from a social network orBank card PIN. Do you need to remember your old password or code? With an excessively good memory, associations can confuse us, providing the wrong numbers that are needed at the moment. Therefore, the brain has the ability to replace irrelevant information with relevant information.

You will find even more interesting and little-known facts about the functioning of the brain, the nervous system and human psychology on our Yandex.Zen channel.

In this regard, there are manyexperimental studies of scientists. They all came to the same conclusion - in order to remember something, a person needs to forget something. For example, psychologists at the University of Glasgow asked participants in an experiment to memorize two tasks. As a result, it turned out that, on the one hand, the first task helped me remember the second one. But on the other hand, the less a person remembered the details of the first task, the better he remembered the second one.

Neuroscientists have come to the same conclusionCambridge. They found that the more often a person remembers one thing, the more he forgets something else. Experiments were also conducted on mice, in which it turned out that new neurons improve the memorization of new information, but at the same time help to “delete” something from the long-term memory of the brain. But, if you think that your memory is really bad, we suggest including certain foods in your diet that will help improve it.