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Millions of French people suffer from this handicap without knowing it, it deprives them of many jobs

More than three million French people have a disability. which has only been studied for around ten years and about which we communicate little.

In 1880, Francis Galton, Darwin's cousin and father of Eugenism, pinpointed a neurobiological problem that, 135& nbsp;years later, it still fascinates researchers. The scientist had noticed; that certain people possessed an intriguing peculiarity, which prevented them from putting images on the objects they thought of. As reported by Le Monde, Galton had demonstrated Through tests that some had difficulty visualizing abstract concepts and could not demonstrate visual imagination. For example, imagine a breakfast with its different elements, their sizes, their colors, their textures, without having them in front of your eyes, their & ;eacute;was impossible.

What Galton then calledé the absence of 'mental imagery" became in 2015, "aphantasia". A little-known cognitive disorder that nevertheless affects nearly 160 million people worldwide and more than 3 million French people! is not a painful disease, but a peculiarity of the disease. which thus prevents at least 5% of the world's population from visualizing a mental image. Or, more simply, from imagining a known object as if we were seeing it.

The origin of this disorder is unknown. This could be the consequence of a brain trauma or a particularity of the brain. congenital. Aphantasia does not affect all people in the same way, some can partially see an image, while for others # Others it's complete black. But overall, scientists have shown that people with aphantasia are slower than average to process visual information.

Millions of French people suffer from this handicap without knowing it, it deprives them of many jobs

Could you imagine your breakfast with as much precision or almost as if you had it in front of you ? © margouillat,123RF

Several testimonials from people suffering from aphantasia show that this particularity is caused by aphantasia. cognitive can extend to the other senses, like Matthieu Munoz, co-founder of "Aphantasia Club". The young man's brain is incapable of finding images,  but also the sounds and smells of an event, so much so that after a few months, the memory disappears completely and irreversible way.

There is no treatment and you can live very well with this disorder. Nevertheless, there is a risk for the child to be disabled. by learning difficulties, due to the specificities of the school system. In schools, the methods are generally based on memorization and visualization. As in the case of dyslexia, support is possible and aphantasia is not synonymous with failure. However, and as explained by Charlotte Langlais, author of the book "Aphantasia Club : research on the spectrum of mental imagery", affected herself' Even with aphantasia, certain professions seem excluded, in particular all those where the visual and conceptual aspect is very important, such as architect or painter.

The author discovered very late that she was suffering from aphantasia, like many ;#39;others, diagnoses are often made late. We generally detect the problem ourselves, but there is still the VVIQ test  (Vividness of Visual Imagery Questionnaire), which is currently a reference and is available online. Concretely, if when you imagine an apple you can see it as if it were before your eyes, see the color and even for some the texture of the skin, you are not doing part of the 3 million French people affected.

Teilor Stone

By Teilor Stone

Teilor Stone has been a reporter on the news desk since 2013. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining Thesaxon , Teilor Stone worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my teilor@nizhtimes.com 1-800-268-7116