What happens in your brain when you pay attention?

What does it mean to pay attention? In a recent TED talk, research scientist Mehdi Ordikhani-Seyedlar talks about attention, and a study done looking at brain activity while individuals engage in two different types of attention.

When you think of attention, you may think of what you are focusing on in a particular moment. For instance, while reading this, you believe that you are paying attention by focusing on the words on your computer screen. But, attention actually has more to do with what your brain is not focusing on - what it's filtering out. In fact, attention is often defined as the ability to improve one’s processing of information by blocking information that is irrelevant to the task at hand. As you can imagine, for those with ADHD, this ability to block irrelevant information can be more limited, further contributing to common ADHD symptoms.

This TED talk is worth the watch if you’re interested in learning more about your brain’s abilities. Mehdi’s research helps to expand our ever-growing understanding of the human brain, and delves into potential future computer-based treatments for those with attentional disorders!

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