Does having religious faith help us feel less pain? Does it actually change the way our brain can work, and therefore, perceive real physical pain? A new study says yes. You can read about this study below and follow the link for details on the study.
The research, to be published in the next edition of the journal Pain¹, reveals, for the first time, that religion-associated pain resistance is linked to the activation of the brain right ventrolateral prefrontal cortex (VLPFC), an area associated with both cognitive down-regulation of pain and reassessment of the emotional meaning of an experience – for example by giving a neutral or even positive meaning to a noxious experience, and so making it much easier to cope with.
The research contributes for a better understanding of pain coping mechanisms, and, consequently, can put us closer to new and better therapies for pain, but also might help to comprehend how cultural influences, such as religion, can affect the development and use of the different parts of the brain. And it does give an extra meaning to the saying “faith helps through life’s pains”. > Read More