A new research has shown
that physical pain and intense emotional like that of rejection hurts in a
similar way by activating the same 'pain' pathways in the brain.
Researchers studied about 40 people who had experienced an unwanted romantic breakup in the past 6-months. Every participant claimed to feel rejected whenever they thought about their breakup. The brain activity in the participants when they watched the photo of their ex-love and when they held a hot cup of coffee was analyzed with the help of functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). It was seen that in both the situations the secondary somato sensory cortex and the dorsal posterior insula regions of the brain were activated. Previous studies have shown activation of these areas during physical pain.
Researchers say that the findings might offer a new insight into how social rejection might lead to various physical pain symptoms and disorders. The study has been published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.