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Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Do ADHD drugs really help college students without ADHD?

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Over the past 15 years there has been grow­ing aware­ness that many col­lege stu­dents with­out an ADHD diag­no­sis use ADHD drugs. On some cam­pus­es, rates of self-report­ed non-med­ical use have exceed­ed 30% of stu­dents. Read the rest of this entry »

Update: Meditation-based mental training can lead to clear –yet surprisingly varied– cognitive and emotional benefits

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Dear read­er,

Time for Sharp­Brains month­ly e-newslet­ter, dis­cussing lat­est think­ing, research and tools for life­long brain health and men­tal health.

Enjoy!

New thinking:

New research:

New tools:

 

Last but not least, we invite you try these 25 brain teasers and games when you have some down­time dur­ing the sum­mer — fas­ci­nat­ing, aren’t they?

Have a great month of August,

 

The Sharp­Brains Team

Think twice before taking Aderall for cognitive enhancement: It may actually impair working memory and other cognitive abilities

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ADHD drugs do not improve cog­ni­tion in healthy col­lege stu­dents (Sci­enceDai­ly):

Con­trary to pop­u­lar belief across col­lege cam­pus­es, atten­tion deficit hyper­ac­tiv­i­ty dis­or­der (ADHD) med­ica­tions may fail to improve cog­ni­tion in healthy stu­dents and actu­al­ly can impair func­tion­ing, accord­ing to a study by researchers at the Uni­ver­si­ty of Rhode Island and Brown Uni­ver­si­ty. Read the rest of this entry »

Meta-analysis finds sustained benefits of neurofeedback for kids with ADHD

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In neu­ro­feed­back treat­ment for ADHD, indi­vid­u­als learn to alter their typ­i­cal pat­tern of brain­wave activ­i­ty, i.e., EEG activ­i­ty, to one that is con­sis­tent with a focused and atten­tive state.

This is done by col­lect­ing EEG data from indi­vid­u­als as they focus on stim­uli pre­sent­ed on a com­put­er screen. Their abil­i­ty to con­trol the stim­uli, e.g., keep­ing the smile on a smi­ley face keep­ing a video play­ing, depends on their main­tain­ing an EEG state that reflects focused atten­tion.

Over time, most indi­vid­u­als bet­ter at this. Sup­port­ers of neu­ro­feed­back argue that learn­ing to alter EEG activ­i­ty and focus bet­ter dur­ing train­ing even­tu­al­ly gen­er­al­izes to real-world tasks that require strong atten­tion skills, e.g., read­ing, home­work, etc.

Although many experts remain skep­ti­cal of this approach, despite numer­ous sup­port­ive stud­ies, a recent­ly pub­lished meta-analy­sis of neu­ro­feed­back treat­ment pro­vides impor­tant new sup­port. Read the rest of this entry »

Initial study finds promise and limitations in using virtual reality (VR) to treat ADHD

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Giv­en the lim­i­ta­tions of exist­ing evi­dence-based ADHD treat­ments, i.e., stim­u­lant med­ica­tion and behav­ior ther­a­py — research on nov­el inter­ven­tion approach­es con­tin­ues to be impor­tant.

Cog­ni­tive train­ing is one such approach that has been sug­gest­ed as a poten­tial adjunct or even replace­ment for med­ica­tion treat­ment. While cog­ni­tive train­ing takes dif­fer­ent forms, e.g., com­put­er­ized atten­tion train­ing, work­ing mem­o­ry train­ing, the basic idea is that by repeat­ed­ly prac­tic­ing cog­ni­tive tasks relat­ed to atten­tion, one’s abil­i­ty to focus and attend will improve. In oth­er words, Read the rest of this entry »

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As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters and more, SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking health and performance applications of brain science.

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