About the Author

Valentin Bragin, M.D., Ph.D., a psychiatrist with over forty years of clinical and research experience, is the founder and medical director of the Stress Relief and Memory Training Center (SRMTC) in Brooklyn, New York. His clinical expertise and interests include depression, dementia stress and stress-related disorders.

The foundation of his program is a set of unique sensory-motor exercises coupled with attention and memory training exercises. His clinical experience and research-based knowledge suggest these exercises can also slow down or at least postpone the process of decline in attention and memory function.

Dr. Bragin feels very strongly that while successful treatment for depression may start at the office, it must continue at home. To this end, he has developed an innovative treatment strategy that utilizes the brain's reserves and self-repair capacity to fight depression and to postpone memory decline. Dr. Bragin developed the Brain Activation Program, an innovative treatment strategy that draws on emerging data about the brain’s plasticity and self-repair capacity. His Program has been available to every patient of the Center for the last eight years. The patients love and enjoy it, and many are active collaborators in the program's ongoing development.

Dr. Bragin graduated from one of the oldest and most prestigious medical schools in the former Soviet Union, the Russian Medical Military Academy in Leningrad. He earned his Ph.D. at the same school. He also earned an engineering degree in medical informatics. After twenty years of clinical and experimental practice in medicine in the former Soviet Union, he immigrated to the Unites States in 1986. After finishing residency, he delved into work with patients whose medical illnesses were almost always accompanied by emotional problems such as depression, anxiety, and fear, as well as cognitive difficulties with memory and attention.

The results of Dr. Bragin's treatment program have been presented at national and international conferences, and were published in the American Journal of Alzheimer's Disease and Other Dementias in 2005. Further, he has now released three books: two versions of his first book How to Activate Your Brain (in Russian in 2005 and in English in 2007) and his second text, Conquering Depression in the Golden Years in 2008.

Dr. Bragin's enthusiasm for his work and the encouraging results he sees daily has prompted him to dedicate significant time to educating the public about the importance of fighting stress and depression and preserving cognitive functions in people suffering from dementia. He has written over seventy educational articles on the subject in Russian language newspapers. He currently speaks at community centers in the NYC area and is a frequent guest on the Russian radio station. In 2007 he was also a guest on two English-language radio shows, Boomer Times & Senior Life and HealthRadio.Net.

Testimonials from people who have read Conquering Depression in the Golden Years and implemented his powerful and integrative Brain Activation Program:

The book is a powerful, warm resource for depressed seniors who want to help themselves. I know from my own experience about the effectiveness of Dr. Bragin's treatment, approach and methods. I came to the Center seven years ago, depressed, in emotional pain. I learned how to become my own healer. I am enjoying my life again. —Sima Kaplun

I do not know how I would be living without Dr. Bragin's books. From the morning when I wake up, and to the evening when I go to sleep, I use his exercises every day, several times a day. It keeps me busy, helps me to stay active and, more importantly, happy. —Bronya Fridlyand

Written in easy-to-read language, the techniques detailed in this book are so easy to implement. It could become your companion, your helper, or even your "desktop" book. It has definitely helped me fight stress and depression in this infinitely restless world. —Irina Gorovets

After my wife's death, I became very depressed - constantly sad and forget¬ful. I did not sleep and did not want to do anything that I loved doing before. Shortly after coming to the Center, I learned different techniques and started using exercises at home. My depression is gone and I continue enjoying these exercises every day. Dr. Bragin's program helped me through very difficult times and continues to help me today. —Vladimir Miskin

Praise for Valentin Bragin’s “How to Activate Your Brain”

“How to Activate Your Brain” is a practical guide to brain stimulation, and its author is caring and encouraging every step of the way. Stories of success achieved by Bragin’s methods enliven the reading …. The large-print format, easy-to-follow instructions and numerous photographs and diagrams make it easy for patients and/or their caregivers to understand the exercises …. His [Dr. Bragin’s] work provides not only hope for those facing the possibility of mental decline, but positive actions that can be taken to reverse one of the most feared aspects of aging.” —Kristine Morris, ForeWord Magazine

“For seniors, part neuro-physiological primer, part exercise guide, all of it intelligent …. Unlike some texts geared toward older adults, Bragin's is refreshingly free of condescension, and the instructions are clear and simple …. A strong player in the field of memory-enhancing exercise manuals for seniors, intellectually stimulating upfront, with a physically chal¬lenging flipside.”—Kirkus Discoveries

“Dr. Valentin Bragin’s book How to Activate Your Brain is a small treasure of valuable knowledge, experienced insight, and practical medical information related to memory loss … by the time you reach the concluding remarks, your life – and probably the lives of friends, family members, and loved ones – will be positively changed for the better.”—Tom Kerr

“Author Valentin Bragin, M.D., Ph.D., provides an innovative strategy for people suffering from cognitive decline to better utilize the brain’s own reserves and resources in his new book, How to Activate Your Brain: A Practical Guide Book 1 .… This book is a valuable resource for health professionals and can be easily utilized by elderly and medically ill people living at home, adult retirement communities, nursing homes and rehabilitation centers.”—The Jewish Light