critical period

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crit·i·cal pe·ri·od

1. in the first hours after birth, the period of maximum imprintability; the period before and after which imprinting is difficult or impossible;
2. in animals, a period following birth when the processes underlying the capacity for socialization are activated or stamped in;
3. Synonym(s): amblyogenic period

critical period

Etymology: Gk, kritikos, critical, peri, near, hodos, way
a period during a developmental or rehabilitation crisis. Examples are the brief period in which a zygote may be formed, in which a patient may survive a myocardial infarction, or when an embryo is most vulnerable to effects of medications used by the mother.

critical period

A point in a biological rhythm (biorhythm) that occurs when an individual crosses the middle of a cycle, either from a high to a low or a low to a high; during critical periods, the person is believed to be more accident- and illness-prone.

period, critical 

A time after birth during which neural connections can still be modified by interference with normal visual experience or lesion of the visual pathway. If a person has an anomaly (e.g. amblyopia), the treatment is most likely to be effective during the earliest part of the critical period. In man it lasts up to about seven to eight years of age. If neural connections are impaired permanently during this period it will usually be impossible to repair later and the younger the child the more damaging it is. Example: binocularly sensitive cortical cells (stimulated by normal binocular vision) may never develop in uncorrected strabismus, or prolonged occlusion occurring during the critical period, especially before the age of three, and therefore the patient will not have binocular vision. Syn. plastic period. (However, this term relates more specifically to the time course during which the visual system is still responsive to treatment. This may differ from the critical period of development); sensitive period. See form-deprivation myopia; occlusion treatment.

Patient discussion about critical period

Q. what is the most critical period of pregnancy where i should be more aware? to the environment , diet ... and things like that...

A. The most critical, is unfortunately, the period with the highest chances of the pregnancy not to be noticed - the first weeks of the pregnancy. During the first eight weeks of pregnancy the various organs of the body develop most substantially, also called organogenesis. This is considered the most sensitive period. However, the fetus may be sensitive to insults during the whole pregnancy, so other periods are not "safe".

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References in periodicals archive ?
Critical periods of vulnerability for the developing nervous system: evidence from humans and animal models.
Henry Kissinger may have missed the critical period for learning to speak English without an accent, but his English grammar and vocabulary are rich and learned.
Fitzgerald states that I overlook recent research on critical periods as presented in the Diamond and Hopson book.
Serotonergic systems targeted by developmental exposure to chlorpyrifos: effects during different critical periods.
NASA now wants to couple those upgrades with its planned smart-cockpit upgrades, which involve installing electronic equipment that will do much of the deductive reasoning for pilots during critical periods of a mission.
More importantly, our customers will have an ability to not only offset their energy costs, but will also contribute to the state's economic health by helping to reduce electricity consumption during critical periods.
Prior to collection, the eelpout broods had been exposed to effluent during critical periods in embryonic sexual development.
Differences in age of onset and impairments observed," she says, "suggest the possibility of critical periods of brain development in terms of its sensitivity to the adverse consequences of diabetes.
Once artists are identified, Bardic will provide artists with the critical financial, creative, and internal resources necessary for growth, acting as an "incubator" to help artists through their most critical periods of development.
Pregnant women with high skeletal lead concentrations run the risk of exposing their children to lead during critical periods of fetal development.
The researchers estimated known annual yields using end-of-season Palmer Index values and compared those results with estimates based on values from the end of the two critical periods.
leaders and historic figures, Nonaka will study the impact of leadership throughout critical periods of American history, including the Civil War and Reconstruction, World War II, the Great Depression and the Civil Rights Movement.