Social sequelae caused by corona masking-To prevent mask addiction (obsessive-compulsive disorder)-

What is Masknication?

Masknication is a coined word by our association,Communication through masksis a term that refers to

Human-to-human communication involves not only verbal exchanges, but also various aspects such as eye contact and micro-expression analysis. Mehrabian's experiments, famous in cognitive science, showed the world how important nonverbal communication is.

Merabian's experiment...verbal, auditory, visualWhen the information contradicts each other, we investigated which information humans give priority to, and the ratio is7:38:55It turned out to be This is the reason why primates are said to be visually dominant.

Human communication relies half on visual information. In addition to Mehrabian, there are many reports suggesting the importance of nonverbal information (tone of voice and changes in facial expressions), and in developmental psychology, it is known that the baby's brain responds to the mother's facial expressions. I'm here.

Nonverbal communication plays a very important role in human acquisition of sociality.

However, in Japan, we are facing a situation in which such communication skills may be taken away. The masknication brought about by the corona crisis carries the risk of changing the state of society for future generations.

It's already become a social problem!?

Masknication has many problems. There are individual differences in hearing ability due to age and constitution, as symbolized by the phenomenon that high-frequency components of sound become inaudible with age.

An increasing number of elderly people are complaining that it is difficult to hear what the other person is saying due to the double shielding effect of the mask and the acrylic board in the corona sickness. Elderly people feel a lot of stress in communication between masks and acrylic plates, and sometimes they get frustrated and cut off.

Even if the function of the eyeball is normal, vision is lost if the neural circuits that process images are damaged. This is a condition called blind sight, in which images through the retina are input into the brain, but cannot be perceived by the conscious mind, so they cannot be seen. You can't see the other person's face,Unconscious emotions react to changes in the other person's facial expressionI know that.

This means thatHumans are always reading the other person's facial expressions and emotions under unconsciousnessThat means. Masknication severely impedes this ability to read emotions unconsciously.

In a world where you can't feel the emotions of others, one wrong step can increase people's aggression and easily lead to quarrels... The inability to sense the feelings of others can lead to excessive fear and extreme black-and-white judgment.

Imagine encountering an alien with completely different facial features and expressions. Don't you think our greatest fear is not being able to read other people's emotions?

American psychologist Paul Ekman's ``relationship between emotions and facial expressions'' is known to differ depending on race. Even if people of the same race can sense (feel) it, there are situations where it is difficult to sense (feel) it between people of different races.

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Difficulty seeing the other person's faceMasknication creates unnecessary stress by reducing the ability of humans to perceive (the ability to feel).There is a possibility.

There are hidden risks in the medical field as well. For medical personnel, the information obtained by looking at the patient's face is important in many ways. Examinations that look only at a computer screen are out of the question, but for a doctor who conducts visual examinations properly, examinations in which the patient's face cannot be seen are nothing but risks. This means that you run the risk of missing small changes.

The impact on physiological functions such as respiration and smell has also been pointed out from various quarters. In particular, the damage to the brain due to reduced stimulation to the sense of smell cannot be overlooked from the perspective of dementia prevention.

Experiments investigating the relationship between the sense of smell and the hippocampus have also suggested the importance of living with a variety of odors.A “smellless society” will degrade the human brainIt is possible. Conversely, overly strong artificial odors can also damage the brain.

For the olfactory peculiarities, seeCognitive Science of Smell Harassment"Please refer to.

Mask addiction could accelerate Japan's declining birthrate

In the field of comprehensive clinical practice, it is known that biased neuronal activity seen in developmental individuality (developmental disorders) increases the risk of developing psychiatric disorders such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (formerly obsessive-compulsive disorder) and addiction.

At such sites, it was feared that some people would be unable to remove their masks from the early days of the corona crisis.I wonder if more people will fall into a condition that can be called mask compulsion or mask addiction.....

Unfortunately this is becoming a reality. An increasing number of people feel that they can no longer imagine life without a mask.There is a possibility that people who cannot remove their masks will spread throughout society even after the corona crisis has subsided...

The author believes that the impact on people who have strengthened their fear of interpersonal contact, especially on the generation who spent their childhood, adolescence, and school days affected by the pandemic cannot be ignored. What kind of marriage will they hold in the future, and what kind of shadow will be cast on their sexual intercourse with their partners?

In socioeconomics, it is known that a significant population decline is likely to lead to a decline in international competitiveness. Japan is a typical example (the international competitiveness ranking has fallen from 1st place to 30th place), and preventing the declining birthrate is one of the most important themes that determine the future of the country.

In that sense, it may be said that countermeasures against masknication are an urgent issue.

Japanese people who read the atmosphere too much -People who avoid becoming a minority-

In the international community, it seems that there are few occasions when Japanese people are highly evaluated for their negotiating skills. There is a view that the country is handicapped because it is not connected to the mainland and has no land borders.

On the other hand, there is a characteristic that the power to unite and unite the people is strong. As symbolized by the spiritual culture of valuing harmony, the power of people moving forward in one direction isSocial Resilienceis thought to be the source of

However, at the same time, it is a double-edged sword, for example, the desire to read the mood of the world and belong to the majority, and the almost unconscious sense of security in riding such a rail. The percentage of people with this kind of mentality is high, and at the same time, it may be connected to the cognitive bias that "the majority is always right and the minority is wrong."

The mechanism of majority voting is one of the means, and it does not necessarily mean that "majority = good or right", nor does "minority = bad or wrong".It is necessary to separate the magnitude of numbers from right and wrong and right and wrong.

Reminiscences of a senior Japanese military officer during World War II: "Even if we wanted to end the war, it was filled with an atmosphere that could not be ended..."We were moving in that air...' says it all.

Among group sympathy biases, our association is particularly concerned with unconscious beliefs such as “majority = justice” and “majority = justification” (heuristic or unconscious bias).majority biasI'm calling it.

Japanese people are not good at individual-to-person debates, a kind of group psychology that makes up for that weakness by forming a clique. The mentality that even if you can't win with your individual power, you can win with the unity of the team. As a result, they may be connected to the "ability to read the atmosphere too much" peculiar to Japanese people.

From my point of view, the Japanese culture that emphasizes collectivity can be both an advantage and a disadvantage at times. There are individual differences in opinions.

About prevention and countermeasures - First of all, know the characteristics of your own country -

Those who have a deep understanding and appreciation of conditional probability and sensitivity & specificity know that "PCR positive = infected person" is not.→ reference video

The first thing that should be kept in mind is the difference with Europe and the United States. While there are more PCR-positive people than in Japan, many people are removing masks as soon as restrictions are lifted.

Many Japanese who see such overseas reports feel "unbelievable". Aren't these people scared? How can you do that? But there is a reason for this behavior of Europeans.

A higher proportion of people have higher numbers of serotonin transporters in their brains. in shortMany people find it difficult to feel anxiousIt is mentioned. Furthermore, many people have the DRD4-7R receptor gene (dopamine receptor gene) that strengthens Novelty Seeking, so WesternersMany people have a strong spirit of challengeThat's what I can say.

On the other hand, Japanese people are known to have the opposite genetic characteristics of Westerners listed above. The percentage of people with high numbers of serotonin transporters is extremely low, and the number of people with the DRD4-7R receptor gene is also extremely low.

in shortMany Japanese have an anxiety gene and few have an adventure gene….
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These genetic characteristics indicate thatCompared to Western countries, many people feel insecure, and the majority of people are afraid of failure and try to take a steady path. This is the characteristic of Japanese people.

Instead of the common name of developmental disorder, the author is doing activities that "Let's call it developmental personality as much as possible!"The genetic characteristics of Japanese people should also be considered as “national-level individuality”I think.


In considering the “individuality of a nation,” Mr. Tadao Umesao’s “ecological history of civilization’ is an indispensable masterpiece. I recommend reading it if you are interested.Natural disastersAccording to a survey of the amount of damage byworld20% or more of the total damage ofthe japanis occupied by It can be said that Japan is one of the world's leading natural disaster-prone countries.

It is thought that the experience of being repeatedly hit by such disasters is engraved in the Japanese genes, and as a result, this may have formed the genes that strengthened risk management. This may have led to characteristics such as the anxiety gene and the adventure gene.

thereforeIt is only natural that there is a difference between the Japanese sense of wearing a mask and the Western sense of wearing a mask. should understand..

First of all, we can say that this is the “first step” to prevent mask addiction and countermeasures, starting from knowing ourselves.

I believe that by increasing the number of people who know this background, even one more person will be able to realize a healthy post-corona situation.

For those interested in Cognitive Science Integrated Approach (COSIA)

The Cognitive Science Integrated Approach (COSIA) is a concept that represents the “integration of cognitive science and medicine” and has its origins in pain management in musculoskeletal primary care.

In the current situation where image labeling and diagnosis of the cause of pain diverge, the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) has revised the definition of pain and is shifting to the "emotional origin theory of pain."

If you are interested in COSIA, please visit the "Special Site for Medical Professionals and Therapists". We look forward to your participation.