At what age does the brain starts to deteriorate?

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  1. ngureco profile image79
    ngurecoposted 12 years ago

    At what age does the brain starts to deteriorate?

    And at what age does the human brain stop developing?

  2. Wytchewoode profile image60
    Wytchewoodeposted 12 years ago

    It depends what you mean by deteriorate. Do you mean physiological deterioration or gradual cognitive impairment due to aging? It seems that from physiological maturity - around the age of 18 the brain begins to lose brain cells; the estimate is something around 1000 neurons a day. Brain cells or neurons do not regenerate but this does not necessarily lead to cognitive impairment since there are some 100 billion cells in the human brain so at the rate of a thousand neurons dying per  day it would take almost 300,000 years before the brain ran out of cells. There is evidence that unhealthy lifestyles - smoking, alcohol, drugs, junk food 'may' increase the loss of neurons but cognitive functioning is not directly related to the number of cells per se but more likely the connections between them... Research suggests that it is possible and even desirable to maintain healthy cognitive functioning by regular exercise and such research shows that apart from degenerative diseases like Alzheimers or physical injury it is possible to retain healthy brain functioning, awareness, memory, problem solving and spatial awareness well into old age ... simply by exercising the brain with mental exercises and it's possible that certain nutrition aids in this. In effect the brain is like a muscle ... the more it is exercised, the stronger and more flexible it becomes.

  3. lburmaster profile image72
    lburmasterposted 12 years ago

    The moment you stop learning. There is a group of nun's who, 30% were supposed to be prone to alzhiemer's. However, none of them had alzhiemer's and lived to the old age of, at least, 110. This was discovered when one of the nun's donated their body to science and the doctors openned her up to find the mind of a 30-year-old in the body of a 110-year-old woman. They each learn 5 languages, 4 musical instruments, work from before dawn till after dusk.

    1. Dr Billy Kidd profile image90
      Dr Billy Kiddposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      What cool information.

  4. jeanniedoe profile image56
    jeanniedoeposted 12 years ago

    Deterioration of brain begins when you stop to learn (age). Most of the time people who do not exercise their mind suffers from Alzheimer or any memory problem compare to those who keep on learning or exercising their mind.

    1. Wytchewoode profile image60
      Wytchewoodeposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      Alzheimers is an organic disease though ... not caused by lack of mental exercise.

  5. Dr Billy Kidd profile image90
    Dr Billy Kiddposted 12 years ago

    Brain cells have been shown to rejuvinate. What kills off a lot of them is chronic stress. What is interesting is that SSRIs, like Prozac, can cause the nucleus accumbens to grow, and along with that, your memory improves. So, as you think better, your depression might ease.

    Funny, it was the stress that casued the brain shrinkage in the first place, like in PTSD, and that the treatment makes a part of the brain grow back.

    But as far as your question: stress takes its toll in terms of brain shrinkage all the way back in the womb. Women under extreme stress have children with smaller, dysfunctional brains. The stress hormones in the mother's blood restructure the growing brain to handle stress when the child is born.

    1. Dr Billy Kidd profile image90
      Dr Billy Kiddposted 12 years agoin reply to this

      I meant to say the hippocampus (not the nucleus accumbens) degenerates under stress and grows when taking an SSRI antidepressant, like Prozac. THC, the ingredient in marijuana, blocks the recoptors on the hippocampus. So you can't remember things.

  6. Sue St. Clair profile image68
    Sue St. Clairposted 12 years ago

    The age at which brain function begins to drop in a majority of the population is around 35. That has been termed the peak performance age of the brain in some of the early studies.

  7. Ann1Az2 profile image75
    Ann1Az2posted 12 years ago

    Unless you suffer from dementia, I don't think there is an age. A person's brain is always developing if they stay active in life. Not just physically, either. People need to read to keep developing.

  8. BrainSmart profile image38
    BrainSmartposted 11 years ago

    The human brain starts to age as soon as we are born ,in fact the most dramatic burst of growth happens in infancy .The human brain begins to decline in processing ability only if the correct care is not taken .The brain ages at different rates for different people depending on what they eat ,how the socialise and how often they excercise.Do all three and your brain will stay young for longer.


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