Latest News » Early concentration training may help lessen impact of brain damage

Teaching you child to stay focused can have longterm health benefits.

Many parents find that getting their little ones to pay attention can be a challenge, but it is one that must be faced, not just for the sake of an orderly home or classroom, but for a child's success later in life. Now, researchers have discovered another incentive to nurture this cognitive ability in young children.

According to a study published in the neuroscience journal Neuron this month, cognitive training early in life may be able to lessen the impact of inherent brain abnormalities as well as damage from a serious injury.

To determine this, a team of researchers from New York University, State University of New York Downstate Medical Center and the Nathan S. Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research monitored the behavior of lab rats that had suffered neural damage as infants.

The first step was to determine if the subjects were less likely to adapt to specific conditions – in this case, avoiding a location on a metal plate that would give their feet an electric shock. Once the researchers established that adult rats with neural problems did show a lack of adaptability and understanding, they wanted to see if targeted brain training early on could help..

The scientists proceeded to teach test animals how to process and respond to this negative stimulus at a young age, and ultimately found that doing so increased their brain health later in life, as the rats were still able to avoid the electric shocks as they grew older.

In an article on the study, The Scientific American reports that study author Dr. Andre Fenton saw the results showed "how the brain's ability to grow and adapt could overcome could overcome an intense biological insult with purely behavioral training."

While promoting concentration early on can have significant benefits for any child, it is still an important skill for adults as well. Click here for information about the focus supplements we carry.