A lot of things can be responsible for making your hair stand on end, from a sense of impending danger to cool breeze tickling your neck. You might also get goosebumps when you hear an inspirational song or a speech. But it’s not because the music is amazing or the words are inspirational – it’s just because part of the brain thinks that you may be in danger or feeling different. Today we’ll tell you everything you need to know about goosebumps. So, let’s get started.
Everything you need to know about goosebumps
The scientific term for hair standing on end is called piloerection. It’s a reflex that causes our tiny muscles near hair follicles to contract and make the hair stand. The reason for this can be many stimuli one of those can be a cool breeze on a warm day.
Another cause of goosebumps is the sympathetic nervous system. This system is a series of automatic reflexes that are activated when our brain senses some danger, and it makes a bunch of physical reactions ready to tackle the danger. In addition, to activating the sweat glands and quickening the heart rate, our body raises hair to look tougher and bigger to the potential threat, much like a cat who’s about to fight.
An interesting fact is that the reaction to danger is also what causes goosebumps when he hears something inspirational speech or music.
How does inspirational speech or music cause goosebumps?
The human brain is divided into two. We have one emotional brain and a cognitive brain. Our emotional brain is responsible for our response to threats – it responds quicker to extender stimuli that the cognitive brain. While we’re listening to inspirational speech or music, our emotional brain recognizes it as noise. The cognitive brain is responsible for identifying rhythm, melody, and all the factors that make music or speech pleasurable.
Music that simply causes goosebumps doesn’t do so because it is beautiful or inspirational. It because of specific noise in the music that triggers a sense of danger.
It’s only after the emotional brain responds that our cognitive brain takes over, microseconds later. And then it recognizes that there’s no danger. Then it shifts the response from fear to pleasure, and then our brain releases dopamine as a reward for correctly assessing the lack of threat. Dopamine causes a wave of good feelings.
Why are some people more prone to goosebumps?
Well, if you’re someone who experiences more goosebumps well, it could be because of personality traits. In psychology, there are 5 big traits, such as openness, that are further divided into more categories. It’s believed that people who experience more goosebumps are ranked higher on openness to emotion, a trait that is linked with the appreciation of beauty and variety.