12 Surprising Memory Facts
Do you remember what you ate for breakfast this morning? If the image of a plate of eggs and bacon popped into your mind, that memory was the result of an incredibly complex power—one that reassembled various memory impressions from a web-like patter of cells scattered throughout our brain. Daily, our brain processes information while all of the different systems work together perfectly to provide a cohesive thought. Thanks to memory, we are able to store, preserve and reproduce information.
Here are 12 interesting facts about the human memory—if you can remember them!
- Scientific research has shown that the human brain starts remembering things from the womb—memory begins to work 20 weeks after conception.
- Memory has two components—short term and long term. Most short-term memories only last 20 to 30 seconds.
- Memory is influenced by a variety of factors. Memory based on what you saw vs what you hear is called visual and auditory memory.
- The storage capacity of the human brain is virtually limitless.
- Caffeine doesn’t maintain memory performances, it only increases alertness.
- It is believed that an adult can remember twenty to one hundred thousand words.
- Sleep is important to memory. Although scientists don’t know exactly how it affects the brain, it has been shown that sleep aids storage and retrieval of long-term memories.
- Many people associate memory loss with aging. However, the memory loss we see the older we get is generally because we tend to exercise our brains less as we age.
- Your memory can associate a scent with a certain event or occurrence. A smell can trigger the memory in your mind associated with it. The hippocampus is the part of the brain largely responsible for the formation of new memories and directly interacts with our sense of smell.
- There is such a thing as “false memory”. Researchers are beginning to understand that the human mind can create, exaggerate, distort, or re-invent a memory after a traumatic experience or something that impacted them greatly.
- The mind must be exercised just like any other muscle in the body. The harder you think about a memory, the more likely you are to remember it accurately. Thinking will create a stronger link between active neurons.
- We are more likely to remember the information that is provided if it is in a weird, difficult-to-read font.
Can you Believe these Famous Individuals Ability to Remember?
- Alexander the Great was able to remember all of the names of his soldiers—there were approximately 30,000 people in his army.
- Mozart was able to play and write down all of the notes from a song he had heard but once.
- Winston Churchill knew by heart almost all of William Shakespeare’s works.
- Bill Gates can remember hundreds of different codes of the programming language that he designed.
Our memory helps make us who we are. From remembering childhood events, to where we left our keys, memory plays an important part of our lives.
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