A New Kind of Stress Response Triggered While Driving discovered by Scientists

Everyone knows the physical sensation of acceleration, when we increase speed while driving and move from one place to another, we have the sensation of going up. But few of us know what effect this will have on the human body. In a new study, scientists used a small experiment to study the physiological effects of acceleration. Participants simply drove in the metropolitan setting of Brian College Station in Texas. 

Driving conditions are good, traffic is smooth and the weather is clear. However, while these trips are nothing on the surface, the trips in the car reveal something else. According to the researchers, about half of the volunteers in the experiment experienced some kind of “strong stimulus,” even at relatively slow speeds, frequent parking, and simply driving through cities triggered a stress response.

“We call this phenomenon ‘acceleration,'” explained Ioannis Pavlidis, a computational physiologist at the University of Houston. ‘Accelerated excitation is the stress that we think is caused by accelerated events or even minor events.”

“Accelarousal” actually feels like something from The Quick and Livid, but it is not a pleasant or constructive excitement. In this case, excessive stimulation is an acute stress response, indicating that the driver feels overburdened by potential stressors, but it may be hidden, but it can be revealed by galvanic skin exercises and coronary heart rate readings. 

Thermal facial image of a hyperaroused driver
Thermal facial image of a hyperaroused driver.

In this experiment, 11 participants had a stress response. Monitored by a digital thermal imaging camera in the car, the sensor measures the area of ​​sweating around the nose, which is an involuntary facial response that indicates arousal of the sympathetic nervous system. 

At the same time, the computer recorded the acceleration, speed, and brake actuation. In this experimental setting, all healthy participants (young but skilled 18-27-year-old drivers) took turns driving a pre-arranged 19-kilometer circle city. This is not an exciting journey, but it is a specially designed route to simulate natural driving in the most gentle environment in nature. 

“The possibility of acceleration is trivial, similar to entering a highway from a ramp or driving into a highway from a soft purple,” the researcher writes in the paper. How ordinary these driving situations are. The results confirm that n types of routines are enough to cause about half of the drivers to have a greater arousal response to acceleration. 

Varied a lot, in which the “accelerated” participants suffered nearly 50% higher pressure than the non-accelerated participants. Pavlidis explained that This is indeed a continuous behavior, which may well indicate that this is an inherent human attribute. Although the physiological response to completely different types of driving has been studied before, the result of natural acceleration itself is not Consider 

Although the measured value of this particular experiment is very small but based mainly on the results reported here, we are likely to have caused a lot of waste to basic car travel regulations, increased pressure may affect half of the driving force residents (Don’t point out the passengers, although this was not measured in these evaluations). 

“Psychometric measurements gathered through a standardized questionnaire survey of each volunteer at the end of the unit symbolize that the accelerating driver seems overloaded,” Pavlidis said, “This clearly shows that acceleration is affecting the driver and the driver is not aware of it.” Compared with other unaffected healthy drivers, why do some “easy to accelerate” people suffer more pressure due to acceleration, but the crew speculates that this may be partly due to genetic susceptibility.

What is clear is that apart from looking at how much the individual exhibited may have long-term penalties for an accelerated response, they are not very good regardless of the impact on people. 

“If these conditions occur continuously and sustainably, long-term health effects are more likely to be achieved than other long-term stressors,” the authors write.



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