Sad movies help reduce pain

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sad-moviesWatching sad or traumatic movies can sometimes be just what the doctor ordered. A new study reveals that watching _______________  (1) movies may boost our tolerance to pain. Researchers at Oxford University say that movies that get your emotions going can increase the _______________ (2) of endorphins released by the brain. These are our body’s natural painkillers – _______________ (3) that make us feel better after physical or psychological pain. Dr Robin Dunbar, a co-author of the study, explained that: “Maybe the emotional [distress] you get from tragedy _______________ (4) the endorphin system.” He added: “The same _______________ (5) in the brain that deal with physical pain also handle psychological pain.”

Dr Dunbar and his colleagues conducted a series of tests to _______________ (6) the effect that tragic stories have on us. They invited 169 people to take _______________ (7) in the experiment. One group watched a traumatic drama about a disabled man _______________ (8) homelessness, drug addiction and alcoholism. Another group watched a documentary on the geology and archaeology of Britain. The results showed that on average, the pain _______________ (9) of those who watched the traumatic drama increased by 13.1 per cent. This compared to an average _______________ (10) in pain threshold of 4.6 per cent for those who watched the documentary. Dr Dunbar suggested one reason we like watching sad movies is the natural high from the endorphins.

(Adapted from on 25 September 2016)

triggers chemicals battling amount tolerance
part decrease distressing determine areas

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