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  Life   Health  20 Mar 2018  Study finds depression can cause memory problems

Study finds depression can cause memory problems

THE ASIAN AGE
Published : Mar 20, 2018, 11:56 am IST
Updated : Mar 20, 2018, 11:56 am IST

The study says living with depression can lead to a number of issues, including sleep deprivation and increased levels of stress.

The research, carried out at Brigham Young University in Utah, United States decided to explore whether there is a correlation between depression and memory interference. (Photo: Pixabay)
 The research, carried out at Brigham Young University in Utah, United States decided to explore whether there is a correlation between depression and memory interference. (Photo: Pixabay)

A new study now finds that people who suffer from depression may have difficulty distinguishing between similar memories.

The study says living with depression can lead to a number of issues, including sleep deprivation and increased levels of stress.

 

The research, carried out at Brigham Young University in Utah, United States decided to explore whether there is a correlation between depression and memory interference.

Memory interference occurs when an individual finds themselves unable to fully take in new information due to past memories or thoughts.

Professors Donald Shelton and Brock Kirwan from Department of Psychology at Brigham Young University carried out a pattern separation test.

The researchers noted that those with higher depression scores were more likely to achieve lower scores on their pattern separation tests.

The tests consisted of presenting the participants with a series of objects on a computer screen, some of which were familiar and others not and showed that those with greater levels of depression struggled to differentiate between similar objects.

 

However, this doesn’t mean that they’re suffering from amnesia; rather that a few details of their memory could be missing as a result of poor mental health.

Kirwan explained that there are two areas in the brain where new cells are grown. One of them is the hippocampus which is involved in memory. In case of depression, the growth here is decreased.

A recent study by the University of Illinois has also revealed that those who try to suppress their negative emotions are able to reduce the impact of negative memories.

The researchers hope that their findings could lead to improved treatments for people with depression.

Tags: depression, memory, sleep deprivation, stress, health and well being