Growing Popularity Of Online Brain-Training Games

 - FRANCOIS GUILLOT/AFP/GettyImages

FRANCOIS GUILLOT/AFP/GettyImages

Growing Popularity Of Online Brain-Training Games

Every day, millions of Americans go online to play games and do puzzles that promise to improve memory and mental processing. Diane and a panel of experts discuss whether these brain-training games really work.

For centuries, scientists believed the human brain was fully formed in childhood and did not change. But in recent years, studies have found the brain continues to make new connections over a person’s lifetime. In 2008, researchers found that older adults who engaged in brain-training drills could improve cognitive abilities. This set off a flurry of new brain-training websites promising users could slow memory loss and other effects of aging. Now, millions of Americans visit these sites every day, playing games and solving puzzles. But critics say the online training doesn’t have real-life benefits. Diane and a panel of experts discuss the surge in brain game applications and whether or not they work.

Guests

Dr. Barry Gordon

professor of neurology and cognitive science, The Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions; editor-in-chief, Cognitive and Behavioral Neurology; co-author, "Memory: Remembering and Forgetting in Everyday Life and Intelligent Memory."

Dr. Majid Fotuhi

founder and chief medical officer, NeurExpand Brain Center; author of "Boost Your Brain: The Art + Science Behind Enhanced Brain Performance" and "The Memory Cure: How to Protect Your Brain Against Memory Loss and Alzheimer’s Disease."

Dan Hurley

science journalist; author, "Smarter: The New Science of Building Brain Power"; contributor to The New York Times, Discover and Wired.

Michael Merzenich

founder and CEO of PositScience; he’s also a neuroscientist and author of “Soft-Wired: How the New Science of Brain Plasticity Can Change your Life”

Six Steps To Growing A Better Brain

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