How songs stuck in head help our brain remember things better?

How songs stuck in head help our brain remember things better?

We suppose many of you have faced a situation where a particular song “gets stuck” in your head. And this song is constantly playing, you may hum it aloud or unknowingly. Amazingly, according to the latest data from scientists, songs in the head allow our brain to remember better.

According to a number of experts, such “unpleasantness” has no negative consequences for our brain. Scientists from the University of California at Davis found that such habits, on the contrary, strengthen the memory. Here is one of the quotes from these scientists:

A song stuck in head enhances one’s memories. It makes it possible to remember better the events associated with the melody. For example, people can relive pleasant moments from the past, remember events in movies better.

Peter Janata, who is a professor of psychology at the University of California, Davis, during a conversation with the press noted that music triggers autobiographical memories in people’s heads. The researcher also notes that this fact is known to official science for a very long time. However, the mechanism of memory is still unknown.

Scientists do not know why a person in the head forms a certain relationship between music and any events of life. And sometimes this connection is very strong. Even a small fragment of a song can increase the power of memories.

New research by scientists has tried to lift the veil of this mystery. Researchers were able to link the formation of “earworms” (songs stuck in the head) and music-induced memories. In the latest experiment, scientists worked with 25 to 31 subjects over different time periods. At first, people were given the opportunity to listen to a little music. After some time they were again asked to listen to the same tune, but also included a fragment of a previously unknown movie. In some cases, participants were advised to watch a small fragment of the movie without additional musical accompaniment. Then people were asked to play from memory and the melody, and the film itself. And the effect was always almost the same.

Researchers eventually were able to make a connection between the increased detail of the movie memory and the quality of the music memorization. People remembered more elements in a certain section of the movie with which the music was associated. Some people were even able to remember quite well what they were doing while watching the movie and listening to the music. Peter emphasize separately that none of the participants in the experiment was no special education.

Peter Janata notes the importance of the work done. Scientists show that music can improve the quality of remembering different information. Other researchers emphasize that “earworms” are a normal memory process, one should definitely not treat them as a nuisance.

The authors of the research note the need to strengthen the work and continue the tests in this direction. In the future, this data can be used for the therapy of memory loss and other similar diseases. For example, music can be used to help people with dementia.


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