I am fascinated by all of the things that can go wrong with the brain. This study deals with chronic deja vu, but another related phenomenon that intrigues me is jamais vu – basically the opposite of deja vu, it is the feeling that things you see all the time are strange and unfamiliar.
I don’t know about you, but I get that ALL the time. I live here? I work here? This is my car? Who IS this person?
Most people have the sensation they have done certain things before, but for some the feeling is constant.
Trapped in their own ‘Groundhog Day’, they believe they have experienced unique events before.
A team at Leeds University was moved to investigate the phenomenon after seeing a patient convinced he had already been to his friend’s funeral.
The researchers suggest the extreme deja vu is caused by a faulty memory process.
The patient who triggered the researchers’ interest was referred to the memory clinic at Leeds University by his GP, but initially refused to attend because he was wrongly convinced he had been there before.
He even “remembered” specific details about times and places he had met the doctor at the clinic.
The man, who was in his 80s and had dementia, also described how all the programmes on TV had been on before, and – perhaps more unusually – that he could hear the same bird singing the same song in the same tree every time he went out.