Old Factory Bulbs or Oh Dear…What’s That’s Smell?

Posted by: michael  :  Category: Factors affecting Brain Health

Your sense of smell plays an important part in your life. It has long been known that there is a powerful link between the sense of smell and emotions. Think about it for a moment: perhaps the aroma of a cake baking recalls happy memories of grandma’s kitchen  – lovely or maybe the smell of paint makes you feel sick – not so lovely!

So what’s going on?

Well, first you need to know what olfactory bulbs are. Olfactory bulbs are sensory neurons (working cells in the brain) found in tissue high up inside your nose and which connect directly to your brain, in particular, to the cortex, amygdala and the hippocampus  

Is that important? You bet… you see the cortex is known as the seat of higher learning in the brain and has an area devoted to processing information from the senses. Then there’s the amygdale which is known as the seat of emotions and our old friend the hippocampus which is known as the seat of memory. That’s a mighty powerful combination all connected to your nose and helps explain why graphic memories and intense feelings can often be caused by familiar aromas.

Having a good sense of smell not only helps your memory function and your enjoyment of food, it can serve as an early warning system for potential danger. For example, smelling smoke from a fire, odour from a gas leak or even toast burning in your toaster! In fact, some recent research suggests that in pending dangerous situations the sense of smell is heightened.

What’s important to remember…

1) Olfaction (the process of smelling using your olfactory bulbs) has a strong influence on memory formation and as mentioned above with the cake-baking memories based on it are long-lasting. So regularly practicing smelling different types of aroma in addition to those you normally encounter can be beneficial.

2) Because of the relation between sense of smell and memory formation, a loss in that ability may indicate a reduction in cognitive fitness (brain health). Of course, the loss may only be temporary and caused simply by a cold, for example. However, some researchers suggest that more permanent reduction may be an early indicator of something more serious such as Parkinson’s or Alzheimer’s disease

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3 Responses to “Old Factory Bulbs or Oh Dear…What’s That’s Smell?”

  1. Mickey Factz Says:

    I had thoughts very similar to this!

  2. Denise Mccall Says:

    Awesome work there. signed up to your rss feed!

  3. Susanne Sirnio Says:

    This is a great post, but I was wondering how do I suscribe to the RSS feed?

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