Thursday, December 14, 2006

Visions of Sugarplums - Stimulating Visual Imagination

When we close our eyes, a vigorous network of multisensory brain areas becomes activated. The brain up above shows how much brain switches on when test subjects are asked to close their eyes. fMRI researchers have to be careful how they design their experiments. What looks like resting from the outside, might be heavy sensory work on the inside.

Compared to eyes open, eyes closed activated bilateral "visual, somatosensory, vestibular and auditory cortical areas" as well as "olfactory and gustatory system" (sight, body position sense, movement, hearing, smell, taste) so the full multisensory experience.

So don't let your holiday rush get the best of you. Take time out to close your eyes or you'll miss the sugar plums.

We'll take a brief blog break for the Christmas holidays. We'll try to post once before Christmas, then be back December 27th.

Eye closure in darkness animates sensory systems pdf
Eye closure activates taste and smell
ENL Blog: The Daydreaming Brain
picture of sugarplums
picture of eyes shut

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