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Hippocampus or hippocampus is a small part of the brain that plays an important role in remembering new information and connecting emotions to those memories. Damage to the hippocampus can lead to impaired memory formation
Hippocampus is part of the limbic system, which is the control center for emotional reactions. This part of the brain is located in the inner temporal lobe, near the center of the brain. The hippocampus functions to process memory, helps humans recognize objects, and remembers and understands the language they hear.
Function of the Hippocampus in the Brain
The main function of the hippocampus is to process declarative memory, which is a type of memory that involves things that are intentionally remembered, such as certain facts or events. This section is not involved with short-term memory and procedural memory, such as memory for walking or running.
Here are some specific functions of the hippocampus:
1. Processing and storing spatial memory
The back of the hippocampus is involved in processing spatial memory or memories related to direction and location. An example of spatial memory is the memory of the route from home to school or to work.
2. Strengthen memory
Hippocampus also has a role in strengthening memory.This function will stand out during sleep, especially after learning something. Several studies have found that hippocampus activity increases during sleep, resulting in sharper memories when you wake up.
3. Sending memory into long term memory
A memory or memories are not really stored long term in the hippocampus. However, this part of the brain acts like a sending center that becomes a transit point for memories before they are sent and stored as long-term memory.
This function is as important as the storage function, because without being processed and strengthened in the hippocampus a memory will be forgotten. Just like the previous function, sleep has a big role in supporting this memory transfer process.
4. Supports cognitive and social abilities
The Hippocampus is also involved in supporting one's cognitive abilities and social behavior, so that it can support humans to interact and participate actively in society.This is related to the function of the hippocampus which is able to process new information and understand various events in everyday life.
In addition, the hippocampus also allows a person to use good and correct language so that he is able to adapt to the surrounding environment, no matter where he is.
The impact of damage to the Hippocampus
Because the hippocampus is involved in the formation of long-term memories, damage to this part of the brain can seriously impact a person's long-term ability to remember things, such as names, dates, events, directions, locations, and orientations.
Several studies have shown that damage to the left hippocampus can lead to impaired recall of verbal information, while damage to the right hippocampus can lead to impaired memory related to visual information.
Damage to the hippocampus is also considered to affect a person's creativity, imagination, and empathy, as well as his ability to socialize and use good and correct language in society.
The disease most widely known to be associated with damage to the hippocampus is Alzheimer's disease. In addition, several studies have also found that hippocampal damage is associated with depression, cognitive impairment, and epilepsy.
To maintain the he alth of the hippocampus and the brain as a whole, you are advised to regularly exercise, eat a balanced nutritious diet, manage stress well, do brain exercises, and avoid smoking, alcoholic beverages, and the use of illegal drugs.
If you often forget or suddenly find it difficult to remember something that you had memorized very well before, especially to the point that this complaint interferes with your daily life, immediately consult a doctor to get the right examination and treatment.