Math feels like pain in the brainbrain areasbrain scansmath anxietypain in the brainphysical pain
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.
“For someone who has math anxiety, the anticipation of doing math prompts a similar brain reaction as when they experience pain—say, burning one’s hand on a hot stove,” says Sian Beilock, professor of psychology at the University of Chicago.
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