Neuroscience Revelation of the Week – Cognitive Training Can Help Your Brain Regulate Negative Emotions

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Every week we will use this new series to cover a new scientific revelation in neuroscience that has happened recently.

Feeling depressed? There’s an app for that. Well, not just yet, but maybe soon.

A new study from the Ben-Gurion University of the Negev Neuropsychology lab, led by Dr. Noga Cohen, has shown that some cognitive training can help the brain regulate negative emotions.

As part of the study, 26 volunteers were monitored before and after multiple computerized cognitive training sessions that utilized functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). The main task for the participants was to identify the direction of a target arrow among many others that surround it. The participants that completed the intense version of the training showed reduced activation in their amygdala – a brain region involved in negative emotions.

“These findings are the first to demonstrate that non-emotional training that improves the ability to ignore irrelevant information can result in reduced brain reactions to emotional events and alter brain connections,” said Dr. Noga Cohen.

In the future, the possibility of having such a cognitive training software might lead to helping individuals suffering from depression or anxiety.

(Source: ScienceDaily.com)

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