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More about Aphantasia

Before I discovered aphantasia, I had never conceived that I completely lacked a mind's eye.
More about Aphantasia

What people with Aphantasia see when they close their eyes

I didn't discover I had aphantasia until I was 50 and only because it was mentioned on a silly episode of a silly Netflix series called Space Force

Aphantasia is a rare condition in which an individual is unable to visualize images in their mind's eye. This means that when they try to conjure up a mental image, whether it be a memory or something they are trying to imagine, they are unable to see it in their mind as if it were a movie or a photograph.

For most people, mental visualization is a natural and automatic process that happens without conscious effort. It is something that we use every day to help us remember things, plan out tasks, and even daydream. However, for those with aphantasia, this ability is severely impaired or completely absent.

There is still much that researchers do not understand about aphantasia, and it is not clear how common it is in the general population. Some estimates suggest that it may affect up to 3% of people, while others believe it may be much less common. It is also not clear whether aphantasia is present from birth or if it develops later in life.

One thing that is known is that aphantasia is not a disease or a disorder, but rather a natural variation in the way the brain functions. It is not associated with any other medical or psychological issues, and it does not have any negative effects on an individual's cognitive abilities or intelligence.

For those with aphantasia, it can be difficult to explain to others what it is like to not be able to visualize images in their mind. Many people may not even realize that mental visualization is something that they do, as it is such a natural and automatic process for most people. However, for those with aphantasia, this lack of mental visualization can have a significant impact on their daily lives.

For example, someone with aphantasia may have difficulty remembering faces or places, as they are unable to recall a mental image of them. They may also have difficulty following written or verbal instructions that involve visualizing a specific outcome, such as following a recipe or assembling a piece of furniture.

There is currently no treatment for aphantasia, as it is not a disorder or a condition that needs to be treated. However, there are some strategies that individuals with aphantasia can use to compensate for their lack of mental visualization. These may include using written lists or visual aids, relying on verbal descriptions or physical demonstrations, and breaking tasks down into smaller, more manageable steps.

What people with Aphantasia see when they close their eyes

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