Sunday, January 9, 2011

Growing Brain Synapses



This amazing time lapse video of 9 month old Baby Edward shows his exploration and activity.  (turn off the music if it drives your brain crazy as it did to me)

Neurobiologists have found that babies at this age are growing and remodeling millions of synaptic connections in the brain.  This is the peak of this growth and it is called "synapse exuberance".
The brain is constantly remodeling it's connections throughout life but watching Baby Edward at 9 months do his thing is truly eye-opening.

Here he is up close:

21 comments:

KM said...

Interesting. I have a baby nephew who turned 14 months old yesterday. It gives me a new perspective of when I have watched him play in the earlier months.

dianne said...

Gives new meaning to "exuberance." I loved it.

CountryMidwife said...

Awesome! My girl is (still) in an orphanage and will be home @ 14 months. I know her synapses will suffer some but I hope it's recoverable.

This shows how important it is too to have a "yes" environment - somewhere babies can touch, pull on, etc everything, rather than parents running around saying "no, no, no don't touch". It just takes a little prep to have happier babies and parents.

More reason to THROW AWAY the TV when babies come... so they continue to explore, learn, think, feel, etc rather than just stare dumbly.

tracy said...

Great video and music.

Cute! Ha, ha, look at those jammie feet!

Kristina said...

What a charmer!

MarkAngelo said...

Growing brain synapses, we can discover it in our children as they grow old, they are learning the things around they are exposed to, for example dancing where the children find it on TV, singing, playing and etc.

stefanie bill said...

I would be please if you would help me figure out what is the function of synapse exuberance in the brain?

Toni Brayer, MD said...

stephanie bill: If I understand your question correctly, you are wondering "why does it happen?"

Scientists don't know why this phenom occurs at this age, but clearly the brain is developing rapid connections and building receptors for lifelong learning. A 9 month old quickly learns to walk, talk, eat, communicate, coordinate...all higher function brain activity that starts now.

Anonymous said...

Not being a physician I was also wondering exactly what a brain synapse is and does. Got a general idea from your article but would like to learn more about it.

Maria said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Maria said...

I mother of 3 months baby... she can't play of her own now... but still it gives you a indescribable feeling when you see baby playing.. so cute...

Toni Brayer, MD said...

Anon: A "Synapse" is the space between neurons in the brain. Neurons are special brain cells that pass electrical and chemical signals from cell to cell and the synapse is the passage way for these signals.

It is also the name of the oldest cat in Marin (my cat Synapse who died at age 27 years...RIP)

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