Dec 07

Why Constant Learning is Good for Our Brains

Sun, 12/07/2014 - 00:16 — julie

Do you feel like you know everything about everything? If you’re a web designer and you think you know it all, think again. Learning is a life-long process. You continue to learn new things on a daily basis through your experiences and what is happening in the world around you. Learning is more than a natural process, it is actually good for your brain and this has potential health benefits. Here we take a look at how learning different activities (not just web design) benefits the brain.

Strengthening brain cells

A study focusing on how brain cells work together showed that when people learn new activities, the cells form new patterns. When this happened, the brain cells were strengthened. The research showed that the cells formed clusters for each new task studied and that repetition when learning the tasks improved studying. This supports other evidence that suggest that repeated practice will reinforce learning. Understanding this process may help scientists to find out more about the effects of learning on the brain.

Learning a new language

How studying a second or third language affects the brain is a topic of fascination to scientists. Swedish scientists were interested in learning about the physical effects that studying a new language has on the brain. They used MRI scans to study the brains of a group of people learning a language and compared these images with those of a control group who did not speak a second language. Their findings revealed that areas of the brain responsible for language actually grew in those who were currently studying a language, while the brains of the control group showed no change.

It is never too late to learn a new language to increase the size of your brain and, thanks to the technological age that we are all living in, you are no longer restricted to studying conventional languages either. Computer languages such as HTML and Java will also have a similar effect. The beautiful thing about our day and age is that you don’t have to go to a library to learn something, as you can always learn new skills online. For example, you can take an online Microsoft course or any other online course for that matter. Here at WebDesignDev we have a plethora of tutorials to help you learn, such as Photoshop tutorials, Flash tutorials and much more.

Get creative with web design

Creativity is an important aspect of improving and maintaining the brains function. While hands on art forms such as sculpture or painting may be many individuals idea of creativity, in today’s world things are a little different. As with the languages mentioned above, technology has taken things forward and allowed those who are not classically creative to express their ideas and emotions in different ways.

One way that many find an outlet is through web design. Creating a website from scratch can be enormously fulfilling, and it has the added bonus of being accessible from almost anywhere in the world. Receiving feedback from visitors will not only allow the webmaster to hone their skills, it will also give their brains a solid reason for being creative in the first place. This is important, as many people simply cannot see the point of creating for creating’s sake. With comments and engagement from their audience they will be able to see that their efforts are not for nothing, which will spur the brain on to improve further.

Playing an instrument

When you play an instrument, nearly all of the regions of the brain are used. The sections of the brain which are most important when playing an instrument are the parts that are responsible for motor skills, reception of auditory information and processing visual information. The benefits to the brain include improved memory, greater attention to detail, better planning and better strategic planning. Although most people first learn a new instrument while they are at school, there is no age limit for enjoying music. If there is an instrument that you have always wanted to learn, consider taking classes or teach yourself at home with the aid of books and the Internet. Aside from the benefits for your brain, this is a really fun skill to learn that will give you lots of enjoyment in the future.

Other benefits

Many studies have shown that continuing to learn new skills in adulthood can improve memory and cognitive functioning. A Canadian study also suggests that multilingual and bilingual people are less likely to be diagnosed with debilitating illnesses such as Alzheimer’s and dementia. Some studies even suggest that people who continue to learn new skills are likely to live longer. According to the CDC’s National Centre for Health Statistics, those with a Bachelor’s Degree are likely to live on average nine years longer than people with lesser qualifications.

Taking all the evidence into consideration, it seems that continuing to learn new tasks and skills in adulthood has many benefits. Learning an instrument or a second language are fun activities that could potentially benefit your health in the future.

The post Why Constant Learning is Good for Our Brains appeared first on Web Design Blog | Magazine for Designers.

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