Scientists discovered that too much exposure to Mars' radiation can cause space brain among astronauts going to the planet.
Space brain refers to dementia and the sense of dread that astronauts can experience on their trip to Mars.
They found this out after testing rodents with highly energetic charged particle, similar to the cosmic rays that astronauts will be exposed to.
After six months, the researchers found brain inflammation and neuron damage. They found out that there were dendrite and spine reduction on the neurons which damages brain cell transmissions.
Science Daily reported that Charles Limoli of UCI School of Medicine said that this is not good news for astronauts that are bound to a two to three year trip to the red planet.
He explained that Mars' environment is different and cause potential central nervous hazards like performance decrements, memory deficiency, anxiety, depression and impaired decision-making. Limoli warned that these conditions can continue and worsen throughout the years.
This will open up the fear extinction among the astronauts. The Fear extinction happens when a person remembers a dreaded memory which was suppressed.
Limoli explained that this will cause anxiety among astronauts which would be problematic for the trip to Mars.
He also stressed that the astronauts can also experience paranoia during the flight because of the way the brain process stressful events in our lives.
Astronauts may have lived on the International Space Station for more than a year but they haven't experienced similar level of cosmic ray because the station orbits the Earth and is under the planet's protective magnetosphere, The Independent reported.
Limoli then explained that am extra shielding on the astronaut's spacecraft could be done but this will not fully protect the astronauts.
He explained that there's no way to fully escape the cosmic rays. As of to date, they are making drugs to protect astronauts from the worst effects of the radiation.
NASA is set to bring people to Mars in 2027.