In the article, " Why Do We All Feel Touch Differently?" the author describes new research that shows a new circut in the primary somatsensory cortex, which is the part of the brain that contributes to our sense of touch. He talks about how this new circuit "helps the brain figure out how to balance the stimulation coming from outside the body with existing knowledge." (Gluck, 2022). He explains how perception has to do with your brain's processes of taking in your enviornment, but also your prior knowledge of the world around you and your experiences. Chen states in the article that "when you’re perceiving the world around you, your brain does a combination of processing the stimuli that make up the scene, but it also tries to fill information based on what you’ve learned in the past to help you interpret what you’re sensing." (Gluck, 2022). This is why people feel touch differently; why someone could have a higher pain tolerance then another or be triggered by a certain touch after a traumtic experience.
This study is not only interesting, but is revolutionary when it comes to the study of neurological disorders that affect sensory perception. Learning that there is a new circuit within the brain that percevies sensory information can help us discover new treatments based around this circuit. It could be the answer to helping someone with alzhimers or autism. Chen and his team were able to see the different neurons within the primary somatosensory coretx and the reactions that came when an animal touched an object and what changed within the neurons when the environment was rearranged.
This new information on the brain is exciting considering it could lead to treatments of various neurological disorders. For me, this information is important to me and my future career as an Occupational Therapist, since sensory processing disorders are where I want to focus my work and research.
Gluck, M. O., & Thurston, A. (2022, January 6). Why do we all feel touch differently? Boston University. Retrieved June 6, 2022, from https://www.bu.edu/articles/2022/illuminating-the-sense-of-touch-new-neurobiology-research/