The Blind Brain

How Blindness Affects the Structure of the Developing Brain

How blindness affects the structure of the developing brain

When the brain of an individual adolescence and younger is developing, the absence of eye sight can affect the structure of the developing brain. Through the use of morphometry, an extremely sensitive type of brain imaging, researchers have been able to discover that there is significant enlargement of the brain not responsible for vision, which is being used to explain why individuals with blindness often have other heightened sense, such as great hearing. (ScienceDaily, 2009)

Normal and the blind brains

There are several differences that occur in blind brains versus brains of sighted people. For example "the area of the brain normally functioning as the visual cortex in sighted people seems to be active during touch-based reading, which is something that doesn't occur in sighted people." (Mindhacks, 2007) The frontal lobes, which work memory will be larger in blind individual, which allows for enhanced skills. It is thought that a blind individuals can feel subtle changes in temperature and distinguish between auditory echoes from their environment. This is how blind people navigate with the use of a cane and this has also been used to develop technologies use electrical impulses to allow those who are blind to "see."
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