The Brain is an Etch-A-Sketch

etch-a-sketch-houseRecent brain research has taught us that the brain is one big Etch-A-Sketch. It is a blank slate that we get to create. It is more adaptable and moldable than we ever gave it credit for being. The fancy word for this is called neuroplacticity. Our brains become organized due to our experience. The brain is operating by taking in information from the environment and learning to create an appropriate response. During the developmental years, the body’s ability to accurately perceive its environment and respond appropriately dictates later brain growth and development. The blank picture we call our brain is filled in partly by our experience.

Movement is a nutrient to ensure how well we create the neurological connection inside our brain. A child’s ability to move makes a big impact on the wiring and functioning of the child’s brain. Crawling, for instance, has been shown to be an essential movement for proper spinal development (creating the curves of the neck and low back), visual development (necessary for visual convergence), reading (following the words of a page from left to right), and balance (cross pattern movements). The brain is being shaped by repetitive patterns of movement. But not only is the brain establishing means of  “how to move,” it is creating greater connections that actually impact a child’s ability to do the following:
1. Think
2. Reason
3. Turn off unnecessary reflexes that may cause a
hypersensitive emotional response
4. Communicate
5. And Feel.

The brain is a delightful instrument that can be trained. New discoveries have taught us that we can write what we want on the maps of our brains. Factors such as healthy nutrients (omega 3’s-Cod Liver Oil, whole foods, and lacto-fermented foods), healthy play, emotional nurturing, and proper spinal alignment all play a role in creating a rich environment for the brain to grow. To be avoided are toxins (such as corn syrups, processed soy, processed dairy, aspartame, MSG, and synthetic sweeteners) and stifling normal movement patterns in children (like creeping, crawling, climbing, and spinning).

– Dr. Gould

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