We Need to Talk About Books!

Are you a reader of ‘light’ or ‘heavy’ books? Why do so many of us love books set in war time, yet that is the last place we would really want to be?

Prince Or His Music: Which Will You Miss More?

Steven Pinker famously said that music was simply “auditory cheesecake,” a pleasurable activity with no useful or adaptive qualities. Prince fans may not agree!

The Gene No Family Wants to Sing About: Huntington's Disease

Woody Guthrie died of the terrible genetic disorder Huntington’s Disease when little was known about it.Today fertilization technology can save the children of HD gene carriers.

Are You In Need of Bibliotherapy?

The allure of books has been recognized for centuries. But why is fiction so therapeutic? Can you take advantage of this and buy novels instead of therapy sessions?

Listen Up, Women! Super Strong Legs Make Super Strong Brains

Should we be cycling up steep hills every day to preserve our brain cortex as we age? Or is this just media hype?

How To Be Happy Living Off-Grid

Climate change is an important issues in today’s world. Living off-grid or partially off-grid is one way to limit our personal carbon footprint and bring us happiness as a bonus.

On Thanksgiving: Patients Who Gift Their Time to Research

In neuropsychology, functional MRI and other high-tech methods cannot give the detail single cases can provide. And the history of science, whatever the discipline, still has lessons for students and researchers in today's world.

Our Love Affair with Thrillers and Suspense

Thrillers and Psychological Suspense are two of the most popular fiction and film genres. Why are so many of us addicted to them, and what’s wrong with everyone else who isn’t!

The Normalization of Aging and How To Make It Matter

Aging is not a disease, but it can feel like one as the body wears out and the mind slows down. Staying alive too long can command a high price—pain, and an increasing dependence on others. When drastic medical intervention is the only option left to keep someone you care about alive, ask them what this would need to deliver that really matters to them now, at the end.

Creative Rehabilitation, Part 4: Dementia

Creative and individualized strategies to help a person with dementia retain some dignity and reasons for living are feasible in the early and mid-way stages of the disease, and support and therapy can help family members cope when their loved one is alive, as well as make the grieving process less painful.

Creative Rehabilitation, Part 3: Stroke

It is especially important to think outside the box when planning rehabilitation for victims of stroke who are young or members of a minority group.

Creative Rehabilitation, Part 2: Severe Head Injury

Severe head injury is a family's worse nightmare. Are there ways to make the recovery process less stressful and even fun?

Creative Rehabilitation For Brain Injury. Part 1: Concussion

Often good rehabilitation facilities for brain-injured people are not readily accessible or affordable. Creative programs involving family and friends as the rehabilitation support team can be very effective in these cases, and are in place for the long term, unlike rehab centers. In this first post I focus on concussion.

Would you want your brain transplanted into another body?

The announcement that a human head transplant may be as close as 2017 raises many fascinating issues, quite apart from the technical feasibility of the surgical and medical problems inherent in such a procedure. Who are you—your body or your head (with face attached)? Would a brain transplant be less traumatic for families than a head (with brain inside) transplant?

Traveling Through Time

Our ability to mentally travel back and forward in time gives us our sense of self and enhances our lives and coping abilities in many ways.

Why Our Minds Wander

The default-mode network in the brain is online when your mind is wandering off-task, a habit of the human mind that occurs frequently throughout our waking hours. While attending and focusing is essential for new learning and a good deal of high-quality communication, day-dreaming is also vital, especially for creativity.

Mindfulness Without Therapy

Every one of us is an expert in the arts of Mindfulness, Mind Wandering and Time Travel. In this first of three posts I muse about ways to experience mindfulness without therapy, yoga or relaxation exercises, and whether non-human animals demonstrate mindfulness.

The Neuropsychologist as Sherlock Holmes

Neuropsychological research, especially when a patient has a rare disorder, can have more in common with detective work than with psychology or medicine. My case of the man who misplaced his body shows why.

The CEO Has Left the Building: Control and the Frontal Lobes

The frontal lobes are often called the “executive lobes” as they are truly the CEOs of our brain. Without them we can still read, write, talk, travel, play, and carry on with activities that are well learnt, but give us anything novel to do and we are stumped.

Training for a Career as a Clinical Neuropsychologist

In response to many e-mail queries from students I have put together some general suggestions (relevant to all countries) on how to decide if clinical neuropsychology is really the career for you, and if so what you can do to find out about the courses you should take. Included are web links to professional societies, and books to read.

Yes, The Brain Really Is Damaged When Concussed!

Since the 1970s researchers have been telling us that even a mild head injury can cause physical brain damage, and this is the cause of the symptoms following concussion. New research proves this once again, and will hopefully help to convince those who, after all these decades, still prefer to think that the post-concussional syndrome is all in the mind.

The Power of One

Like human faces, every human brain is unique and thus the study of individuals with brain damage can reveal truths about the mind that group studies cannot reveal. And for individuals, the 'power of one' is a strong mantra to hold to when faced with illness or adversity.

My Brain Is Dead

In Cotard’s Delusion depressed patients believe part of their body is dead. A recently described case differs from previous cases. Graham insisted his brain was dead, in spite of admitting he could think, although he no longer felt any emotion. PET scans of his brain showed severe under-arousal of a brain area associated with conscious awareness.

The Story Of Memory And The Man Who Lost It

For lovers of science, and those who relish a heroic story, this is a book that will stand up to a lifetime of journeys, with every reading providing inspiration and something new to contemplate.

An Hour with Oliver Sacks and Danielle Ofri

Watch Oliver Sacks and Danielle Ofri in conversation

Creative Writing and Your Brain

Creative writers often say that their stories -- at least during those precious peak times of creation -- almost seem to write themselves. Neuroscientists have yet to discover how the creative writing process works, but one thing is certain; writing is one of the best and most pleasurable exercises we can do for our brain.

Are Affairs Really Worth It?

“Vow: A Memoir of Marriage” by Wendy Plump is better than any therapy manual because of its insights on how to preserve a long-term relationship by thinking long and hard before falling helter-skelter into an exciting affair.

Dance So There Is a Tomorrow!

Dancing, especially freestyle dancing, may be the best thing you can do to keep your brain as well as your body fit and healthy into old age. It also makes you happy!

Multimedia Oliver Sacks Festival for New Yorkers

Oliver Sacks, the man who made neuropsychology accessible to all, is to be celebrated in an arty festival with something for everyone in New York in April.

The Sacrosanct Second Amendment

Every heart grieves for the victims and families of the Connecticut shooting, but for many non-US citizens, the Second Amendment to the US Constitution is crazier than any psychotic mass murderer.

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