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When People Worry About Math, the Brain Feels the Pain

Published: November 1, 2012.
By University of Chicago

Mathematics anxiety can prompt a response in the brain similar to when a person experiences physical pain, according to new research at the University of Chicago. Using brain scans, scholars determined that the brain areas active when highly math-anxious people prepare to do math overlap with the same brain areas that register the threat of bodily harm—and in some cases, physical pain.

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