Infant Amnesia-not Anymore, Say Experts

by Ann Samuel on  February 18, 2007 at 2:09 PM Child Health News   - G J E 4
Infant Amnesia-not Anymore, Say Experts
According to researchers, if you probably remember something from your very early childhood i.e. before the age of 3, that incident must have meant a lot to you.

Science has always pondered over 'infant amnesia' -inability to remember the past. It was put down to babies being unable to form memories.

Yet researchers from Duke University, who presented their findings at the American Association for Advancement of Science, say that on the contrary, babies do form memories, it's only that they forget it more easily than we do.

The researchers came about their findings by using sensors to monitor the electrical activity of the brains in their subjects, as they administered simple tests of mental focus and attention.

They were able to conclude that by 8 months, most babies could easily put together memories in adult ways. It was also seen that the persistence of a memory becomes progressively longer during the first 18 months of life.

According to one of the researchers Dr. Bauer, the ability to form memories depends on a network of structures in the brain and these develop at different times. There is simultaneously increased efficiency in the ability to form short- and long-term memories.

From age six months to two years, memory increases from about 24 hours to a year.

It was also observed that babies whose mothers had diabetes during pregnancy might be less able to form early memories, than children whose mothers had normal pregnancies.

Source: Medindia

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