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How Negative Experiences Affect Brain Development

Here you see two brain scans – on the left is a scan of a healthy three-year old child next to a scan of a three-year old Romanian orphan who suffered severe sensory deprivation. The neglected child’s brain is smaller and has enlarged ventricles (holes in the center of the brain). It also shows a shrunken… Read more »

The Critical vs Sensitive Periods of Brain Development

We know that the first three years of life are important to the brain’s foundation for healthy psychological development. Neural connections are developed and repeatedly used during those first years of life to enable future learning and development. Critical Periods A critical period in brain development is when the brain must have certain environmental stimuli… Read more »

Brain Development Begins Before Birth!

Parts of the Brain The brain grows sequentially, from the bottom to the top.  The brainstem is first, controlling important physical functions including breathing, heart rate, and body temperature.  Next, the cerebellum is formed.  It is located behind the brainstem and controls one’s balance and coordination.  Following this is the temporal lobe, the emotional center… Read more »