IQ (intelligence quotient) is the mental age divided by chronological age and multiplied by 100. Today, the concept of IQ is a deviation IQ rather than a ratio IQ. The average is still 100, but the deviations from average are assigned with a number which corresponds to a percentile rank. Most IQ tests consist of subtests measuring various areas of cognitive functions including factual knowledge, short-term memory, abstract reasoning, visual-spatial memory and common sense. In order to prevent brain from aging and prevent cognitive decline, it is necessary to increase every type of IQ. The dominant IQ type of a person can be modified by improving memory and attention function.
There are four main categories of intelligence and each correspond to one particular brain chemical system. (see post “Brain Chemical Systems and Memory”.) Each type of intelligence develops during the earliest years of school and can change throughout life. It is quite common for people to be highly developed in one area and deficient in another or for one type of IQ to develop later than others. The loss of brain speed is the first signal that any of the four IQ areas is declining. When memory and attention are having problems, all areas of intelligence will diminish.
Abstract or traditional IQ is the ability to master school work (arithmetic, spelling, reading, writing). Abstract IQ is governed by brain chemical dopamine. High abstract IQ imply a high working memory along with high attention. High abstract IQ people may not have social skills that come with good verbal and visual memory. The abstract IQ is the last part to falter before other IQ types to diminish.
Creative IQ is the ability to incorporate new ideas into established ways of doing things. Creative IQ is governed by acetylcholine. High creative IQ is associated with creativity, high attention, strong visual and verbal memory, empathy, but less efficient working memory as compared to high abstract IQ people.
Emotional IQ include the ability to be sensitive to others and to sustain long-term relationships. Emotional IQ is governed by brain chemical GABA. A loss of emotional IQ may be occurring if a person would rather be alone when used to be extremely social. Other signs of diminishing emotional IQ include lack of empathy, can not see other people’s perspectives, changes in personality that turn people away, decreased verbal and visual memory, although the working memory may remain functional. Very often low emotional IQ people have a hard time to remember faces or listening to long stories.
Common sense or perceptive IQ measure the ability to see things for what they really are. This type of IQ is governed by serotonin. People who thrive in a multitask environment also have high common sense IQ along with high level of attention.
The secret of building a resilient brain is to maintain and raise abstract IQ and at the same time develop other IQs. A balanced brain can improve all domains of intelligence. All four IQ types are directly related to brain chemicals and temperament. Each person may be governed by a dominant brain chemical which not only affects the ability to focus and remember but also governs how we learn and what type of IQ are most dominant. The challenge is the ability to shift from one type of IQ to another and become a master of all four domains. Increasing any type of IQ and changing temperament are the pinnacles of total brain health. A crucial and essential approach for maximizing the potential of brain power is how to prevent brain chemical deficiency (or brain chemical imbalance.) The goal is to be both intelligent and relational: intelligent is to improve memory, attention and enhancing abstract IQ; while relational involves high emotional IQ. Learning from the past experience involves high common sense or perceptive IQ. Maintaining a focus on the future requires high creative IQ. All types of IQs need to be balanced in order to enhance cognition, mood and relationships.
Reaching the maximum level of a balanced brain by attaining every types of IQ won’t happen overnight: it is a whole life mission. Braverman’s protocol is the practical compressive steps that can lead one to the healthier, intelligent brain through prevention and intervention. Braverman’s protocol by Eric Braverman, MD is outlined in the post “A 7- Step Action Plan For Preventing And Treating Memory Loss“.
Reference: book by Eric R. Braverman, MD.