Talk:Effects of stress on memory

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I'm just wondering if there should be a space between Memory and (stress) in the title. Superbyen (talk) 02:10, 5 April 2011 (UTC)


Hello! I tried to correct some typos and weird sentences, only to realize that for some of them I just couldn't: I don't get what the article is trying to say. I mean, I read the paragraph, and I get it, but for some sentences, it's really only thanks to context. The way the mechanisms are explained is fine for me, I get it. Of course I don't know some of the words, but that's normal. But this kind of things:

The results determined that intrinsic stress was facilitated by memory consolidation process and extrinsic stress was determined to be heterogeneous in regards to memory consolidation.

feels a bit like a punch in the chin: you didn't see it coming, and it leaves you a bit confused. What does it mean ? You stress internally more easily when you're consolidating your memory? What's extrinsic and intrinsic, anyway? It's never explained... And what does heterogeneous means in this context? And the rest of the paragraph is the same:

Researchers found that high stress conditions were a good representative of the impact that extrinsic stress can cause on memory functioning. It was also proven that extrinsic stress does have an impact on spatial learning whereas acute extrinsic stress does not.

high stress conditions were a good representative of the impact: Is stress the cause or the consequence? If stress is a good representative of the impact, then it's a consequence, isn't it? But then it says the impact that extrinsic stress can cause. So, cause or impact? Or both? It really isn't clear... And for the rest: what's the difference between 'normal' stress and 'acute' stress? Yeah, it's explained later, but for now I can't understand what you're talking about.

This is especially a problem since this is the header of the article. The different sections can be a bit technical, but the header really has to be understood by anybody, I think.

Cheers, Thouny (talk) 23:37, 22 January 2014 (UTC)

You'll notice that all of the mentions of "intrinsic" and "extrinsic" stress are associated with a single paper. Here is the line from the paper related to the first statement:

The factor source of stress, distinguishing between intrinsic and extrinsic stress is the key to understand the complexity of effects and mechanisms involved. Intrinsic stress facilitates memory consolidation processes, whereas the effect of extrinsic stress in memory consolidation seems to be quite heterogeneous, and therefore, specifying the source of stress helps clarifying the claimed differential effects of stress/glucocorticoids in memory consolidation versus retrieval (Roozendaal [20]).

And here is the one related to the second:

Whereas chronic extrinsic stress frequently has an impact on spatial learning, acute extrinsic stress normally does not affect spatial learning, but has been revealed to be more efficient to disturb retrieval.

I think that the differences between intrinsic and extrinsic stress are too hyper-specific to have such a large focus placed on them in this context. If we discuss the differences at all, we might be better off mentioning them briefly in a later section of the article. Hope that helps. Rob Hurt (talk) 02:26, 23 January 2014 (UTC)

Explicit and Implicit memories[edit]

Both those sections have the same problem: they propose a synonym to either explicit or implicit... by linking to an article that is different from explicit / implicit memory.

Implicit memory ←→ Procedural memory

Explicit memory ←→ Declarative memory

If those are the same things, why are there different articles?

Cheers, Thouny (talk) 01:11, 23 January 2014 (UTC)

Procedural memory is just one type of implicit memory, so I can understand why there are separate articles for the two. Explicit memory, however, is synonymous with declarative memory, and I'm not sure why there are multiple articles for the same concept. I'm guessing that they were created by different people who didn't realize that they two terms both describe the same idea. If you look at either page, you'll see that they are under consideration for a merge. Rob Hurt (talk) 01:25, 23 January 2014 (UTC)
Thanks! But I just proposed them for a merge, so that doesn't really count, does it? But, yeah, the implicit-procedural is explained, thank you very much :) Thouny (talk) 01:29, 23 January 2014 (UTC)
Oops, I didn't see that it was you. I support the merge. Glad to help. Rob Hurt (talk) 01:32, 23 January 2014 (UTC)

Contradictory Information in Introduction[edit]

Cortisol is not negative for memory encoding

This first section, "One class of stress hormone responsible for negatively affecting memory is the glucocorticoids (GCs), the most notable of which is cortisol.[1][5][6] Glucocorticoids facilitate and impair the actions of stress in the brain memory process.[7] Cortisol is a known biomarker for stress.[8] Under normal circumstances, the hippocampus regulates the production of cortisol through negative feedback because it has many receptors that are sensitive to these stress hormones. However, an excess of cortisol can impair the ability of the hippocampus to both encode and recall memories.[2] These stress hormones are also hindering the hippocampus from receiving enough energy by diverting glucose levels to surrounding muscles.[2]"

Appears to be directly contradictory to a number of sources I've found that state while cortisol can in fact impair memory retrieval, it's an important part of the encoding process. "ortisol can help control blood sugar levels, regulate metabolism, help reduce inflammation and assist with memory formulation." "Past work has found that inducing stress, thereby increasing cortisol, during or after learning benefits memory consolidation, while increasing cortisol during retrieval hinders recall. Furthermore, chronically elevated cortisol levels seem to impair memory." "Surprisingly, the researchers say, they did not find any association between cortisol levels and memory encoding."

The reason I bring this up is because as I've been reading about why mental fatigue occurs, that one thing that happens when you study is actual physical stress, which I then began to wonder why your body would introduce cortisol. Cortisol apparently "stimulates gluconeogenesis" (, which is what your brain seems to require when learning new material.

I understand this isn't the place for new research, but feel the introduction should be updated, unless someone has a better case as to how cortisol is negative in regular-to-high-levels on memory encoding. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 17:49, 23 June 2017 (UTC)