Brain/neuroscience questions

Rick Leeland rickleeland at yahoo.com
Wed Sep 29 17:13:33 EST 2004

It is believed that a typical person's cognitive system has a "phonological
loop" in the left hemisphere and a "sketch pad" in the right hemisphere. The
former provides verbal ability (the one you have); the latter provides
spatial capacity (the one you lack somewhat).

   The gender difference is statistically insignificant in your case. A
typical gender difference is that the male has slightly better spatial
capacity while the female has slightly better verbal capacity. The discrepency
in your case is probably way over the chart. So there must be other reasons
for you spatial deficiency.

   There are many possible reasons for spatial deficiency. Any defect in the
"sketch pad" system can contribute to it. Then there is the issue of "window
period" (approximately 1-3 years of age) where a kid must have proper stimulus
to trigger the full growth of brain organs, including the sketch pad.

   At 19 years, you have passed the window period in which the sketch pad 
can be best nurtured. But you can still give it a try. Our brain is extremely
flexible. The more you use it, the better it becomes. Start from something
basic. For instance, try to drive at low speed in the same parking lot
over and over again. Until you can do it without thinking. Once you accumulate
many of these unconscious reflex, you will be able to put them together into
a complex spatial routine.

   The multi-tasking is governed by the prefrontal cortex (PFC). Since you
are not good at multi-tasking, your control system in the PFC is probably
not well-developed. Since this system is one of the last system to developed
in human brain, do not give up on it yet. 

   Best of luck!

khendradm at aol.com (Khendradm) wrote in message news:<20040925013112.16600.00000994 at mb-m16.aol.com>...
> It is often difficult to find clear answers to questions regarding mental
> function.
> For instance, I simply have not been able to find much of anything on why I am
> so good with the written word in most forms (spelling, grammar, vocabulary, and
> so forth) and yet so utterly incompetent in areas like spatial awareness and
> motor coordination (I am almost 20 and still have not obtained a driver's
> license; swimming and bike-riding lessons as a child were hopeless).
> Certain conditions like Asperger's Syndrome, Dyspraxia, and Nonverbal Learning
> Disorder address problems like physical awkwardness and poor visual-spatial
> abilities, but they also REQUIRE that people with said conditions have some
> severe language problem!  I don't have ANY severe language problems.  I can
> understand the abstract and write with exceptional organizational coherency
> (something in which people with AS, Dyspraxia, and NLD are supposed to be VERY
> weak), and in spite of my definite tendency toward introversion, I am not
> completely clueless in understanding nonverbal social cues.  I can interact
> normally with people.
> I have read that women tend to have problems in the area of spatial awareness,
> but I do not know why this is from a brain/neuroscientific standpoint.  And
> while that generalized gender difference may offer more hope in explaining my
> mental tendencies than AS, Dyspraxia, and NLD, there are other gender studies
> that don't apply to me at all.  Example: I read that women are supposed to be
> better at multi-tasking than men due to better information processing between
> the two hemispheres at the corpus callosum, but I am absolutely TERRIBLE at
> multi-tasking; I'd say my multi-tasking abilities are about as bad as my other
> areas of mentioned weakness (and trust me, those are awful).
> Is there anyone here who can perhaps shed some light on the things I've posted?
> -K

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