Memory: Hippocampus and Day-to-day Lives Essay example

Submitted By umwhas1996
Words: 970
Pages: 4

“Memory refers to the capacity to retain and retrieve information and also to the structures the account for this capacity” (Wade, Tavris, Garry, 2014, p.340). Memory gives us a sense of our identity and how to do daily tasks. Memory is reconstructive by the process of drawing on many sources. In memory, the processing of information is called encoding (“convert it to a form that the brain can use” (Wade, Tavris, Garry, 2014, p.351)). Then, over time the encoded information is retain called storage. After storage, the information is recovered out of the memory system called retrieval. There are few brain regions involved in this process, which are amygdala, frontal lobes, prefrontal lobes, parts of temporal lobes, hippocampus, cerebellum, and cerebral cortex.
The regions of the brain involving memory are important. The amygdala is associated with emotional memories. It plays a part in the formation, consolidation, and retrieval of these memories. The frontal lobes function is working-memory and short-term memory tasks. The frontal lobes have to do with individuals’ retrieval of information. The prefrontal cortex and parts temporal lobes encode words and pictures, working-memory, and source monitoring. In the brain, the hippocampus is efficient in memory because the formation of long-term declarative memories, helps in retrieval of explicit memory, and it can bind together various elements of memory so that it can be retrieved later. The cerebellum function is the formation and retention of classical conditioned responses. The cerebral cortex associates with the storage long-term memory and possible involved in the original perception of the information. Each of these regions of the brain is associated with memory involving the process of encoding, storage, and the retrieval of information. The sort of effects that would emerge from damage to these regions is the loss of short-term memory to long-term memory. Damage to these regions would cause memory loss and emotional trauma. A common human psychological disorder that manifests with memory problems is Alzheimer's disease.
Alzheimer’s disease “is a type of dementia that causes problems with memory, thinking, and behavior” (Alzheimer’s Association, 2014). Abnormalities of medial temporal lobe in early Alzheimer’s disease is confirmed in MRI studies, which have discovered significant gray matter deterioration in the hippocampus. Severe shrinkage in the hippocampus causes a major role in memory impairment. “The failure of explicit memory is the most prominent symptom during early stages of Alzheimer’s disease” (Stout, 1999, p.188). In late-stage Alzheimer’s disease, individuals lose the ability to respond to their environment and have conversations. Major regions in the brain associated with memory have shrivel up. There are treatments for Alzheimer’s but there is no cure. Alzheimer’s disease is a progressive disease with current treatments only being temporally and slowing the symptoms. In the United States, Alzheimer’s is the sixth-leading cause of death. Our understanding of memory and its fallibility in our day-to-day lives, schooling, and the system of justice will make us more aware of the limitations of memory.
Memory affects our day-to-day lives because it “gives us our past and guides our future” (Wade, Tavris, Garry, 2014, p.341). Individuals and cultures rely on memory for history giving meaning and coherence. In schooling, students rely on the process of encoding, storage, and retrieval of information. Students could have problems with memories that simply fade with time if not accessed now and then called decay theory. Students could also have problems with new information entering substituting old information called replacement. A third theory that students might have problems in school is interference. This theory occurs because of similar items of information with one another in either storage or retrieval. Cue-dependent forgetting is another theory where