Like Personal Growth on Facebook
If you’ve ever marveled at a friend who speaks more than one language or wondered about whether it would be fun to make a living as a translator, you’ve probably considered the social benefits of being bilingual.
After all, you’re capable of understanding a multitude of beautiful nuances in more than one tongue. However, what you may not have considered is just how much the human brain might benefit from being bilingual.
In this TED-Ed video, Mia Nacamulli reveals the relevant changes in neurological structure and activity, explaining the impact that being bilingual can have on your mental life and development.
Covering areas like problem solving, multi-tasking, picking out relevant information and staying focused, Nacamulli makes a solid case for the view that we should all try to pick up a second language at some point.
In addition, she shows how there are plausibly at least three distinct kinds of bilingual brains, so if you speak more than one language then you may be able to identify the picture that most clearly applies to yourself.
Perhaps most importantly, you’ll learn just how the activity related to being bilingual can reduce your chances of developing degenerative neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s in later life. So, if you have a family history of dementia or just find yourself worrying about how your mental sharpness may decline in older age, one of the best things you could do might be to revive your high school lessons in French or Spanish and try to elevate your skills until you’re fluent.
This decision might just be the thing that keeps you mentally engaged and cognitively flexible when you’re interacting with your grandchildren and enjoying your retirement!