By Michal White
Since reality is the result of our experiences (memory), I find it interesting that reality could be alter by changing our memories. Plus this could be extremely useful if I ever had to lie under oath about something without actually lying.
But what is Confabulatin?
Confabulation is considered a memory 'disturbance' and is classified by the distortion of memories. However, unlike lying, people affected by confabulation believe their false statements are true and will likely defend them to the death. It is uncertain why some people confabulate, but there are many theories ranging from filling the gaps in memories to the inability to properly read memories.
What goes on in the brain?
Confabulation is closely associated with the right frontal lobe. It is thought that it is the result of a malfunction in the process of retrieving long term memory. It can be caused by several other conditions such as, Alzheimer's Disease and Korsakoff's Syndrome; or from an injury to that part of the brain or the anterior communicating artery.
A little research
A study found that children are much more likely to confabulate memories because of the high suggestibility. When asked about something that never happened, children were more likely than adults to conform that it did. this is due to children's underdeveloped reasoning abilities. Though interesting enough, when the children knew they were being tested on their memory, they answered 'I don't know' just as much as adults.
People are more likely to believe false memories are true if they are asked about them at a later time which is likely why testimonies of events have a tendency to differ. They are also more likely to if they are given positive feed back on the memory. If someone were to point out a person they weren't confident in at lineup and receive conformation from the cop, they may end up believing that person committed the crime, even if they are innocent.