" Memory is the quintessential feature of connecting us to past events. It places us in our current context, reminds us of where we are going, and where we have come from. An important characteristic of humans is that we exhibit the ability to control various aspects of memory, which involves cognitive mechanisms that may flexibly influence our awareness of memory. Our overt attempt to control memory becomes most apparent when we are confronted with thoughts or memories that we wish to avoid thinking about. These memories usually revolve around traumatic events that are emotionally painful. Reliving such affective experiences may be beneficial to a point, as in bereavement. However, lacking control over such memories may allow them to repeatedly become intrusive and ruminative in nature. This is most apparent in some psychiatric conditions, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), where retrieval of and rumination over such memories may cause serious distress and impairment. While the connection of memory dysfunction to PTSD is ubiquitous, other psychiatric conditions and their connection to memory dysfunction is somewhat less so, yet easily recognizable. Ruminative thought patterns revolving around memories or thoughts are also present in disorders or classes of disorders such as: anxiety, depression, obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), acute stress disorder (ASD), among others. One common theme uniting these disorders is a lack of control over thoughts that can be conceived of as internal representations stemming from memory.
( Brendan E. Depue- Prefrontal â Hippocampal Interaction: An Integrative Review and Model of the Think/No-Think Task with Implications for Psychiatric Conditions)
Last date updated on June, 2014