Forget Tylenol, Nostalgia Works as a Pain Reliever Too

Maybe this is why older people get so nostalgic all the time.  They have to, because their whole BODY hurts . . .

A study in China found that looking back on simpler times works as a pretty good PAIN RELIEVER.  For example, flipping through old photos might make your back hurt less.

Researchers put people in MRI machines, and measured their brain activity while they looked at pictures from a, quote, “average childhood.”  Stuff like candy and cartoons.

Meanwhile, they used a small device to lightly BURN their forearm to see how painful it was.  And it hurt less when they were looking at nostalgic images.  But photos of modern-day stuff didn’t have the same effect.

So why did it work?  The MRI found that when we’re looking at photos from the good ol’ days, there’s less activity in two parts of the brain that perceive pain.  So in other words, it distracts you so you don’t notice it as much.

It won’t work for severe pain, but might work for things like headaches.  Which is good, because being nostalgic is easier on your liver than pain meds are.  (At least until nostalgia turns to sadness, and you start in on the gin.)