Violence exists as the language of communication and one can find the daily news filled with information on violent acts across the world. Mankind has seemed to have forgotten the meaning of compassion, amicability and care as the world seems to move forward towards materialism and paper money. People are attacked for money, killed for jewelry or murdered for family heir. Pronounced practice of violence is seen not only among the adult population but also amidst youngsters and children. Schools and colleges have reported overpowering rates of bullying. Every second child is either a bully or is being bullied by someone else. Bullying has become one of the top-three causes of injuries worldwide and for the other two top causes visit the website www.firsteatright.com. A kid’s first response to some argument seems to be a slap right on his/her opponent even before trying to discuss the issue and sort it out. Maybe the media around, entertainment programs and our very own family members serve as concrete examples for such acts.
Curbing Violence with Violence
Is violence the solution to violence? A new study has come up with a research that stimulating the prefrontal cortex can reduce a person’s thoughts of committing violent acts by as much as 50% or more. The prefrontal cortex is associated with controlling complicated ideas and behaviors. This controversial study boasts of the fact that using minimum invasion helps to make people realize that making physical or sexual assaults are a wrongful act in our society.
The study team researched on 81 adults above the age of 18 years who were split into two groups. One group received a stimulation (direct current) on the prefrontal cortex for 20 minutes while the placebo group received only low current for 30 seconds. The researchers were interested to check out the prefrontal cortex especially the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex as there have been proofs showing that violent individuals often show deficits in this region of the brain. But serious doubts exist whether brain deficits lead to such behavior or vice versa. The research team wanted to understand whether there was any role that this region of the brain played on elevated chances of violent thoughts/acts by the person.
As a second part of the study each of the participants were given two hypothetical scenarios-one on physical assault and the other one on sexual assault and were asked to rate on a scale of 0 to 10 their intention to act as a protagonist in each of them. Those who underwent stimulation expressed a 47-70% decline in their interest to carry either of the assaults.
Morally Right or Wrong?
Research shows that almost 50% of variation in violence is due to biological factors. Rarely, in times of stress and anger we feel like hitting someone, pushing them down or hurting them but do we really resort to such ideas? The study seems befitting as a solution against violence but there is more evidence and research needed before such solutions can be implemented.
Crime rates are steadily climbing up, sexual assaults are more than ever before and violence is reaching an all-time high. But the solution for this is not instant and we cannot expect changes overnight. Meanwhile, focus on emotional wellbeing as the first step towards less violence. Love and affection in one’s heart prevents the need for any violent attack and communication seems to be the best form to settle scores between opponents. Stay less violent by being emotionally stable.
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Dietitian & Nutritionist Dr. Nafeesa Imteyaz.