Memory is a boon to the human being. An incident, a face or a word can be saved in the memory files in the brain without knowing much about the mechanism.
Some memories make one feel happy and some may throw them into depression. Memories make a person relive the moment that happened in the past. It is ok in the case of good memories that encourage, keep the person in good spirits and make one rich with knowledge. But the bad memories make one go into mental depressions and discourage a person.
The remedy obviously is to forget the memories that disturb a person. But the difficulty in it makes one get into mental depression or may fill one with rage. If you have to forget a thing you have to remember it. You have to remember what you want to forget and it makes it difficult to do it.
That is why a mental patient who fails in stopping himself from getting reactions from his past memories can be clinically helped with Electro Convulsive Technique (ECT).
Memory reconsolidation can be done by taking out a memory from mental storage by accessing and it can be re-written on the brain’s circuits as Marijn Kroes, a neuroscientist at Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands explains.
Kroes discovered that by strategically timing ECT bursts, they could target and erase patients' memory of a disturbing phase in the life of the subject down with depression.
While experimenting, 42 patients of severe clinical depression were shown two videos- one depicting a car accident and the other a physical assault. They were then given ECT treatment. On the next day the patients could not remember the details. But when they were checked after 90 minutes they could remember. That means instead of a sudden memory loss a time-dependant process of reconsolidation of memory took place which is a good sign in the mental treatment.
The researchers published the details of their research in the jounal ‘Nature’.