‘Binge-Drinkers’ Brains Have To Work Harder To Feel Empathy For Other People In Pain

People who binge drink have a harder time feeling empathy for other people who are in pain, finds a new study. University of Sussex researchers found that binge-drinkers regularly showed greater signs of dysfunction in the area of their brains linked to empathy compared to those who don’t regularly drink alcohol. In fact, when shown images of people getting hurt, “[Binge-drinkers] took more time to respond and the scans revealed that their brains had to work harder—to use more neural resources—to appreciate how intensely another person would feel pain.”

Researcher Theodora Duka says, “Reduced empathy in binge drinkers may facilitate drinking as it can blunt the perception of suffering of self or others during a drinking session.” (Daily Mail