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How the brain works- learn about the brain's functions and capabilities.

Updated: Jul 5, 2021



Here at Super Calm Sensory Products our aim is to educate parents, carers, teachers and children on neurodiversity and the impact it can have on the person caring for the child with a neurodiverse difference. We aim to increase understanding on what is happening in the body of a neurologically different person resulting in greater empathy in understanding certain behaviours. By developing sensory diets and activities aimed towards their specific sensory needs the child should reach optimum levels of arousal to allow them to be present during school and home life.

Someone who has neurologically diverse differences may react differently to others around sensory stimuli and other environmental factors. The overall goal is to promote understanding and increase empathy resulting in a more harmonious environment for all.


Our brain explained.

Our brain is like our digestive system, made up of all equally important parts but to work effectively they must all work together. Our brain communicates by means of neurons, creating pathways to remember every thought and movement we and remember how we respond to stimuli. Your brain contains billions of brain cells that coordinate thoughts, emotions, behaviour, movements and sensations. Communication occurs in split second moments. For example if you go to pick up a pot from a stove and its hot your hand tells your brain it feels heat and your brain tells your hands to respond accordingly.

Those who have autism have a slightly different circuit to their brain, which is why we refer to such cases as neurodiverse. Differences in our brains!

The way in which the brains differ can be explained by thinking of our brains as receiving power like a string of lights on your Christmas tree. These are the neurons connecting the sections of our brains. When the circuit is cut the power goes out to the rest of the lights but no communication is being made to the other lights to stay on. This is why oftentimes those with Autism have also been diagnosed with ADHD as it is typically the front of the brain where these power outages occur.

This power outage causes a low supply of brain chemicals to certain regions, and the communication between sections ceases.

This is why here at Super Calm we believe brain training is vital, your brain can grow an unlimited number of neuron wires and in areas the brain finds challenging- pathways can be formed to detour from this area.



Now for the science behind the brain, this is not essential reading however we would recommend reading if you wish to further your understanding of the brain and its inner workings.

The cerebrum is the largest part of your brain, it's normally what people visualize when they think of the brain. This is divided into two parts by a deep fissure. The two sides communicate with each other through nerves called the corpus callosum. Within the two hemispheres are four lobes.

The frontal lobes control thinking, planning, organising, problem solving, short-term memory and movement.

The parietal lobes interpret sensory information.

The occipital lobes process images from your eyes and link it to memory.

The temporal lobes process information from your senses of smell, taste and sound also playing a role in memory storage.

The thalamus acts as a gatekeeper for messages passed between the spinal cord and the cerebral hemispheres.

The hypothalamus controls our emotions, regulates our body temperatures and controls crucial urges like eating and sleeping.

The hippocampus sends memories to be stored in appropriate sections of the cerebrum and then gets them when needed.

Nerve cells have two main types of branches coming off their cell bodies. Dendrites receive incoming messages from other nerve cells. Axons carry outgoing messages from the cell body to other cells like a muscle or other neuron.

 

Studies and published research on effective brain training.

A recent newly published brain study has identified that children with Autism have a surplus of synapses. These are essentially the connections between brain cells. This is due to slowed down pruning processes that occur during brain development. Pruning processes are there to get rid of old synapses. This research suggests that this may be due to brain cells being filled with damaged parts and deficient in signs of normal breakdown components.


Engaging the brain to learn new information is key in developing neurodiverse children. This includes engagement in areas of emotions, senses and experiences in life. This is where Super Calm can aid in the process, by offering tailored programs for neurodiverse children aimed at creating resilience and new ways of learning. Building neuron connections to weaker areas of the brain, much like training your muscles- the more you use them the stronger they become.

As the brain starts to develop new habits, activity in the brain increases and as the activities increase the habit becomes stronger. In short the more you repeat an action or behaviour the more is becomes wired in your brain- relearning the behaviour. This is known as neuroplasticity, the adaptive quality of your brain.

Every time you act in the same way a neurological pattern is created and strengthened- at Super Calm our range of products and equipment allow for neurodiverse children to repeat actions and behaviours to build up these neurological patterns and overtime develop them further as they progress through the stages.



 

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