Personality Type Linked to Brain Deterioration

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A recent study by psychologists at the Washington University in St. Louis has found that brain shrinkage among older adults may be linked to certain personality traits.  Researchers found an association between the deterioration of grey matter in a certain part of the brain and the tendency towards neuroticism in the individuals affected.

This study showed that contrarily those individuals who ranked lower in neurotic traits and higher in other more conscientious areas had bigger volumes of grey matter by age. MRI images of adults between the ages of 44 and 88 resulted in the study’s interesting finding regarding personality type and brain deterioration.

While at present researchers were unable to say whether or not the neurosis contributed to the lower percentage of grey matter, or whether on the other hand diminished grey matter led to more neurotic behaviours, the association between the two was nevertheless clear.  These results might be particularly valuable for linking behavioural traits to associated risks of degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

Chronic stress has been shown in animal studies to severely hamper cognitive functions and the results here might be similar.  Stress is related to neuroticism and as such may account for some of the study’s results.  If this correlation is further shown, it would have a significant impact on the health care field.

Chronic stress, as everyone knows, is a serious problem in today’s society, but it is not given enough attention among health care practitioners when it comes to addressing physical health.  If however it is shown that certain types of stress and behavioural responses to them actually go towards decreasing the amount of grey matter in the brain, than the correlations between physical and mental health will certainly be taken more seriously.

So, it might be that protecting yourself from age related diseases such as Alzheimer’s might involve dealing with the present stress in your life.  Living in a state of panic or fear will lead not only to a lower level of happiness today, but possibly to degenerative disease later in life.  Taking steps now to lower stress levels is therefore key to a joyful and fulfilling present and future.

Your Comments

If the diseases we get

If the diseases we get depends on our personality traits it is certain that brain deterioration is also caused by personality type. Maybe people with introvert personalities who don't share and who remains isolated needs to open up because by being pessimistic the impact of negative signals may create imbalances and lead to diseases such as hypertension, nervous system problems, heart diseases, diabetic, depression and various kind of diseases. Chronic stress can prove very fatal as well so in addition to personality type we should be able to tackle our stress problem which is the main root cause of many diseases.