Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Update: Four tips to practice good mental hygiene during the coronavirus outbreak

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Time for a new edi­tion of Sharp­Brains’ e‑newsletter, fea­tur­ing this time 14 time­ly news and resources for men­tal health and brain health inno­va­tion.

First of all, let’s remain safe, healthy, and cen­tered dur­ing the cur­rent health cri­sis by fol­low­ing these tips pro­vid­ed by the Greater Good Sci­ence Cen­ter at UC Berke­ley:

1. Stay calm and focused
2. Pay atten­tion to those doing the right thing
3. Show grat­i­tude
4. Remem­ber our com­mon bonds

1) “Of course, all of these guide­lines don’t sup­plant the impor­tance of prac­tic­ing good hygiene. We need to con­tin­ue to fre­quent­ly wash our hands and avoid touch­ing our faces, so that we can lessen the chance of infect­ing our­selves and oth­ers. But we also should remem­ber our men­tal hygiene—staying calm our­selves, being grate­ful espe­cial­ly to those doing the right thing, and remem­ber­ing our com­mon human­i­ty. In this way, we can help to make the world safer for all of us.” Four tips to prac­tice good men­tal hygiene dur­ing the coro­n­avirus out­break

2) “Before any­thing else, prepa­ra­tion is the key to suc­cess.”
–Alexan­der Gra­ham Bell

Thank­ful­ly, neu­rotech pio­neer Tan Le out­lines sev­er­al areas where we can take a prac­ti­cal approach to address changes already under­way and lay the ground­work for a more seam­less tran­si­tion to a new era. Fast For­ward to 2040: How to pre­pare for the new era in brain enhance­ment that will change the way we think, work, and heal

3) Here’s a beau­ti­ful way to explore the anato­my of brain regions and brain func­tions. The Vir­tu­al Brain Web Atlas: How the Mind emerges from the Brain

4) “Before stu­dents decide to slip in their ear­buds, though, they should care­ful­ly con­sid­er both their musi­cal selec­tion and the nature of the task” … because “We found that (1) music gen­er­al­ly impaired com­plex task per­for­mance, (2) com­plex music facil­i­tat­ed sim­ple task per­for­mance, and (3) pref­er­ence for exter­nal stim­u­la­tion mod­er­at­ed these effects. There­fore, the data sug­gest that music’s effects on task per­for­mance depend on the music, the task, and the per­former” Does music facil­i­tate or impair cog­ni­tive task per­for­mance? It depends…

5) Because learn­ing can­not, must not, ever stop: Meet the Top 50 final­ists for the Glob­al Teacher Prize 2020

6) Any plans for the sum­mer? Four ways hik­ing pro­motes cog­ni­tive and emo­tion­al health

7) Har­ness­ing tech to pro­mote social con­nect­ed­ness: Every Wednes­day start­ing today we can join scientist/ entre­pre­neur Rana el Kaliou­by online to dis­cuss her new book! Vir­tu­al book tour to explore the fron­tier of Emo­tion­al Intel­li­gence and Tech­nol­o­gy

8) On-field or off-field, train­ing goes on: Sports teams find cre­ative ways to cross-train the brain off-field

9) “You Can’t Man­age What You Can’t Mea­sure” has­n’t yet reached pub­lic health … but it will. To screen, or not to screen (for demen­tia), that is still the ques­tion

10) Sum­ma­riz­ing a recent study, “children’s sleep should be eval­u­at­ed as part of an ADHD eval­u­a­tion as sleep dif­fi­cul­ties are more com­mon … address­ing sleep issues in chil­dren with ADHD is a fea­si­ble and rel­a­tive­ly low-cost approach that can be a valu­able treat­ment com­po­nent for many chil­dren.” Study: A brief sleep inter­ven­tion can bring mea­sur­able and sus­tained ben­e­fits to chil­dren with ADHD

11) Some may and will dis­agree, but net net this offers a major oppor­tu­ni­ty to har­ness smart­phone use data for good: Ver­i­ly and LivaNo­va accel­er­ate efforts to detect and treat depres­sion

12) Poten­tial big news in the neu­ro­mod­u­la­tion mar­ket; coro­n­avirus or not we all have awe­some brains and will expe­ri­ence brain/ men­tal health needs in the future: Medtron­ic might acquire LivaNova’s neu­ro­mod­u­la­tion busi­ness

13) What if “An employ­er wants to reduce the risk of on-the-job dis­abil­i­ty, so it screens appli­cants for neu­ro­log­i­cal mark­ers that they are pre­dis­posed to chron­ic pain and depres­sion…” Let’s antic­i­pate the poten­tial mis­use of neu­ro­log­i­cal data to min­i­mize the risks–and max­i­mize the ben­e­fits

14) The first brain teaser/ test here is espe­cial­ly rel­e­vant these days … Sev­en fun brain teasers to hon­or our unique Brains and Minds dur­ing Brain Aware­ness Week 2020

 

Have a good and healthy Spring,

The Sharp­Brains Team

Will better neurotech regulations be enough to address privacy, effectiveness and potential harm concerns?

See above the fas­ci­nat­ing pre­sen­ta­tions by Dr. Anna Wexler, Dr. Karen Rom­melfanger and Jacque­line Stud­er on pri­va­cy and ethics dur­ing the 2019 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit.

We still lack clear stan­dards and tax­onomies for neu­rotech­nol­o­gy but sev­er­al ini­tia­tives are under­way to antic­i­pate and address the chal­lenges. One impor­tant take-away is that it is impor­tant to be aspi­ra­tional and prag­mat­ic rather than “legal­is­tic” — by con­sid­er­ing diverse pol­i­cy and indus­try per­spec­tives, striv­ing for the widest ben­e­fit with the min­i­mum risks, and bet­ter edu­cat­ing users, we can enable ben­e­fi­cial inno­va­tion in ways that reg­u­la­tion alone –as impor­tant as it is– can­not. Read the rest of this entry »

Update: Humankind’s evolving quest to enhance the brain and the mind

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Time for the first Sharp­Brains’ e‑newsletter in the new decade, fea­tur­ing a range of inspir­ing and (most­ly) promis­ing news about humankind’s evolv­ing quest to enhance the brain and the mind, and a few fun brain teasers 🙂

New thinking:

New research:

New tools:

A few quick brain teasers to workout your prefrontal cortex:

 

Have a great Feb­ru­ary,

 

The Sharp­Brains Team

 

Neurotech seen at CES 2020: BrainCo prosthetic hand, Urgonight, Alpha-Stim X, NIRSIT Lite, Muse S and FocusFit

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Brain tech is here: These gad­gets from CES 2020 rely on your brain­waves to work (CNET):

The futur­is­tic promise of tech devices that use brain waves to improve sleep, anx­i­ety and con­cen­tra­tion — and even con­trol pros­thet­ic hands — may final­ly be com­ing to fruition, with a slew of new prod­ucts on dis­play at CES 2020 in Las Vegas. Brain tech holds great poten­tial for help­ing us under­stand and con­trol our minds from the com­fort of our homes, but sci­ence still has a long way to go.

Here are some of the coolest brain tech prod­ucts we saw at CES 2020. Some of these prod­ucts are already on the mar­ket, while some are only pro­to­types.” Con­tin­ue read­ing over at CNET

News in Context:

On Awe, Healthy Eating, Mental Health, Ethical Neurotech, and more

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Time to wrap-up anoth­er very active month with our Sharp­Brains e‑newsletter sum­ma­riz­ing excit­ing devel­op­ments in brain research, health­care and tech­nol­o­gy — plus a cou­ple fun brain teasers to spark curios­i­ty and inno­va­tion 🙂

New brain research:

New thinking about brain & mental health:

Emerging neurotech and digital brain health:

Finally, a couple fun brain teasers:

 

Have a excel­lent Hal­loween…

 

The Sharp­Brains Team

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As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters,  SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking how brain science can improve our health and our lives.

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