Our perception depends on the surrounding people, and the sense of smell is not an exception. So, if we see how someone wrinkles his face from some strange aroma, then the smell itself will seem unpleasant to us, although if we did not look at another person, this fragrance would not cause us any special emotions.
The influence of other people's emotions on the sense of smell can be seen from the activity of the brain. Participants in the experiment were shown photos of people whose faces expressed joy, disgust, or remained neutral, after which they were asked to class some smell.
If a happy face was shown before the smell, then the smell was perceived as more pleasant. If there was a person in the photo experiencing a feeling of profound disgust, judging by the expression on his face, the same smell was evaluated as less pleasant.
Of course, smells are different, there is a smell of caramel, and there is a scent of garlic, but no matter what the smell is, the influence of other people's emotions still took place. The only exception was the smell of feces - no positive emotions could make it pleasant.
Observing the brain of participants in the experiment using magnetic resonance imaging, the researchers found that other people’s mood affects the pyriform cortex. It is among the nerve centers dealing with odors, but it is not activated at the moment of obtaining the odor information, but a little earlier.
The piriform cortex assesses what is happening around us, what we see around us, and is getting ready to perceive this or that smell on that basis. The effect of other people's emotions can be seen just by the preliminary activity of the pyriform cortex.
There is nothing strange: in order to adequately perceive the world around us, our senses should work together, and if the hearing did not exchange information with eyesight, and the eyesight did not cooperate with the sense of smell, we would constantly come across some unpleasant surprises in our daily life.
British scientists conducted another interesting experiment. In an unfamiliar environment, where many people feel uncomfortable, the person felt an unfamiliar scent, which was not unpleasant and at the same time did not cause delight.
As a result, with the repeated smell of the previously suggested smell, the person has spoiled mood, and a breakdown manifested itself. Through this experiment, it was proved that, despite the fact that the chemical reactions of the body are the basis of olfaction, all the psychological associations are the result.
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