Friday, October 7, 2022

Whole Brain Health with Dr. David Arguna

By Dancerina Starlight

What is Brain Health?

Brain health is the state of the brain functioning across cognitive, sensory, social-emotional, behavioral and motor domains, allowing a person to realize their full potential over the life course, regardless of the presence or absence of disorders.  For example, one of the most common disorders among millions is sleep deprivation. Yet, sleep is the most important thing you can do to reset the brain, allow it to heal, and to restore mental health," says Romie Mushtaq, MD, a neurologist and integrative medicine specialist.

Dr. David Arguna offers a weekly Question and Answer on the brain, using his 3-D facsimile of Brodmann's Brain to illustrate his answers. Participants prepare their questions, and he shares his knowledge as a research neurologist. This weekly educational session allows participants to continue their self-education in well-being.

Each week in Second Life, you can find Dr. Arguna encircled with knowledge seekers, expounding on matters of the brain, health, and wellness through query. 

Today, October 3, 2022, I followed Wisdomseeker's link to the discussion. Though I arrived for the last 25 minutes, I immediately followed the discussion and was intrigued to learn that categorically memories are either general knowledge" or "episodic/autobiographical."  General knowledge, also known as Semantic Memory, involves the recall of ideas, concepts, and facts commonly regarded as general knowledge. Episodic memory, on the other hand, involves the recollection of personal events or episodes in a person's life, such as birthdays.  According to Dr. Arguna it is conscious memory of a previous experience.

Dr. Arguna discussed there is "short-term" memory which is synonymous to immediate recall and working memory. Then there are stored memories, which comprise processes of converting an experience into a memory and a process for retrieving that memory.  Thus, as mentioned earlier, 'autobiographical memories' and general (saved) memories are categorized as either general knowledge" or "episodic/autobiographical" whereby general knowledge would be facts and language, episodic or autobiographical would be our experiences, the actual sensations we had at the time that got saved because these sensations/experience is "salient" and valuable.

When asked by one of the participants, Hannah, "Are the general and episodic memories stored in different parts of the brain or same location or do we know,?" Dr. Arguna stated that 'even the top memory researchers, like Larry Squire at Stanford, have not tackled that question but believes the distinction is clear.'  He stated, for example, that at an early age we were exposed to words, however, now we no longer remember the situation we were in when we first heard a given word.  He clarified that words become separated from sensations though he thinks his granddaughter remembers saying "No!" This is fascinating information which helps us to better understand who we are in Real Life and in Second Life.  It would be interesting to note how the brain functions in both phenomena because though we are avatars in Second Life, we are real people in the Real World with real brains.

As participants continued to show their interests and shared some of their autobiographical and/or episodic memories, Dr. Arguna continued to expound and clarify the difference between each participants' experiences and the associated concepts.  Primarily, he differentiated between thought and memory; discussing to be intentional about separating the two and avoid rationalizing, as thought is different from memory.  Memory is of visual and other sensations that occurred at the time. However, "feelings sometimes mean thoughts and sometimes mean the body sensations we had at the time" stated Dr. Arguna. We have to "reconstruct" when a memory happens, memory is not expandable. When asked by Wisdomseeker whether they were composite memories, Mr. Arguna explained that memories are not time stamped.

Why is it important to maintain brain health?

Brain health is a critical piece of our overall health. It underlies our ability to communicate, make decisions, problem-solve and live a productive and useful life. Because the brain controls so much of daily function, it is arguably the single most valuable organ in the human body. This is true whether we are in Real Life or Second Life.  For example, our behaviors in Second Life is a continuation of who we are, for the most part a healthy brain transcends into a fruitful and productive Second Life.

According to a well known doctor, there are “five pillars of brain health” that scientific evidence has shown to be “fundamental to promoting good cognitive function across the lifespan”; these are moving, discovering, relaxing, nourishing and connecting.

At Inspirational Island, you can find a composite of these pillars which will assist in improving brain health and wellness.

Today's session was deep diving and informative.  

Submitted By:
Dancerina OnPointe Starlight

1 comment:

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