Psychology (category filter × )

Uncertainty and Surprise Jointly Predict Musical Pleasure and Amygdala, Hippocampus, and Auditory Cortex Activity
  • Analysis of 80,000 chord progressions of 745 pop songs from 30 years of a “Hot 100” toplist shows how expectations influence pleasure from listening to music.
  • Chord progressions are pleasurable if they’re different from what we expect, or exactly what we expect — but surrounded by unfamiliar sounds.
  • Previous research suggested that the nucleus accumbens plays a leading part in this process, but it’s actually the amygdala, hippocampus, and auditory cortex.

Math Looks The Same In The Brains Of Boys And Girls, Study Finds
  • Brain activity study of 104 children, aged 3-10, proves that boy and girl brains show the same patterns of activity in the region responsible for math-related tasks.
  • This means that there’s no biological difference between boys and girls that could be the reason why women choose math-related studies less often than men.
  • Since the reason isn’t biological, researchers suggest that it could be economic or social.

Teens who have a loving relationship with their mother are less likely to enter abusive relationships
  • By surveying 140 participants of an ongoing study of children of alcoholic parents, researchers discover consequences of bad parent-child relationships.
  • Children who received more love from their mothers were less likely to be part of violent relationships as teenagers, even if their parents argued a lot.
  • These findings suggest the need for a complex approach to solving relationship dysfunction.
  • Parents need to communicate better to teach their kids healthy ways to resolve conflict, and show their children more affection to strengthen their self-esteem.

Characterization and prediction of acute and sustained response to psychedelic psilocybin in a mindfulness group retreat
  • In a double-blind test on 39 meditators during a 5-day retreat, scientists studied the effects of combining high doses of the psychedelic drug psilocybin and meditation.
  • The drug increased meditation depth, making those that used it more open and optimistic.
  • Combined, meditation and psilocybin produced larger positive changes in psychosocial functioning after a 4-month follow-up than meditation alone.
  • The combination increased feelings of spiritual experience, blissful state and feelings of unity by an average of 40% compared to sober meditators.
  • This shows how experiences of selflessness can influence behaviour and attitudes, and the findings could help create better therapies for common mental conditions.

How intelligence and emotional control are related to suicidal behavior across the life course – A register-based study with 38-year follow-up
  • Analysis of data collected in 1970 from 48.738 young Swedish men, compared to national suicide registers, shows that lower intelligence increases suicide risk.
  • Low emotional control significantly contributes to suicide in young men, but becomes less of a factor with age.
  • Low intelligence, however, remains a significant contributor to male suicide throughout life.




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