By now you’re probably aware that people tend to have different brains for different tasks, but are there differences in how the brain processes emotions?
In a study published last year in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, researchers analyzed brain scans of two groups of people and compared the two.
The study showed that while most people had similar gray matter in the frontal cortex, some people had significantly larger volumes in the amygdala, a region that processes emotions and emotional memories.
The amygdala is a “critical region of the brain for social cognition,” according to the National Institutes of Health.
The scientists say that in contrast, there is some “faultiness” in the brain’s structure that makes people feel different, and that the amygdala is “a critical region of human consciousness” that plays a role in understanding social interactions.
But how is this possible?
What’s wrong with the structure of the amygdala?
It’s not the brain that’s faulty.
Instead, it’s our perception of our own brain.
This is a problem, because the amygdala’s role is “often misunderstood or misunderstood,” said researcher Dr. Paul Fuchs, an associate professor of neurobiology and behavioral sciences at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
“We have an erroneous perception that there’s a mismatch between what’s happening in the hippocampus and the amygdala,” Fuchs told Business Insider.
“And we have to fix this in our understanding of the human brain.”
Fuchs’ study examined brain activity in 19 volunteers as they read a series of sentences from the French title of a poem, “The Heart of a Tiger,” and then listened to a poem from the German title of the same poem.
The volunteers read the poem in the same order they did before reading the poem, but instead of reading one sentence at a time, they were presented with two different sentences, and they were asked to read one sentence after the other.
The researchers found that people who read the first sentence read a smaller hippocampus, a part of the cerebral cortex that is involved in learning and memory, while people who saw the second sentence read an even larger hippocampus, which is involved with processing emotion and social connections.
“If you have a large hippocampus, then your brain will respond in a way that is more adaptive to learning, because you are learning something,” Fuch told Business Insiders.
“But if you have an even smaller hippocampus … the brain will not respond in the way that it does for a large brain.”
“The amygdala is critical region for human consciousness.”
What about how the amygdala works?
According to Fuchs and his colleagues, it plays a key role in social cognition, or how we make sense of the world around us.
“In humans, the amygdala functions as a sort of ‘frontal cortex-brain interface’ for processing social information,” Fuckels said.
“The brain processes the social information from the amygdala and then processes the emotion-based information from that.”
The amygdala, in other words, plays a central role in the process of social interaction, and Fuchs said that, in general, the bigger the amygdala the more likely it is to be involved in social processes.
However, in the case of “The Tiger,” the amygdala was bigger than in the other two poems, so there was some overlap between the two, but the scientists found that “the amygdala in general is much smaller than the hippocampus in humans.”
“We can say, ‘Well, the larger the amygdala in the poem that I read, the more I will react to it and the more emotion will be involved,’ ” Fuchs explained.
“However, in humans, there’s this mismatch between the amygdala size and the hippocampus size.
So it’s not that the hippocampus is larger, but that the brain is smaller in humans.
And that mismatch is something that has to be fixed, because people are not like humans.”
Fuckel said that although the amygdala isn’t exactly a large region, it is much larger than the brain.
For example, if the amygdala were a larger structure in humans than in animals, Fuchs suggested, humans might react differently to the same emotional stimuli. “
It’s probably a matter of how the structure is shaped, because humans are not apes.”
For example, if the amygdala were a larger structure in humans than in animals, Fuchs suggested, humans might react differently to the same emotional stimuli.
“That would be a problem if there were a whole class of emotions in the animal kingdom, and we were all reacting to the exact same stimuli, because we don’t have the same capacity for emotion,” Fufkels explained.
The problem, of course, is that “there are different emotional processes in animals that are very different from human emotions,” Fuylls said.
For example: “In chimpanzees, they’re more social than humans,” Fuhr said.
The research has shown that humans, like animals, also have a tendency to exaggerate emotions, so