empathy in brain health and well-being


Senior Member
In the part that preceded this one, the author relates a study that was done on a group of people who were given Botox and then shown pictures of people smiling. Then they were asked to describe the emotions that they saw in the pictures, but failed to. Then he goes...

Their muscles were so deadened that not only were they unable to manifest emotion, but they also had no feeling in these muscles to allow them to autonomically
read emotions in others. This suggests that we rely upon the interpretation of our own facial muscles to interpret behaviour in others. This highlights that empathy in brain health and well-being cannot be taken for granted.

I need this part clarified. What does "empathy in brain health and well-being" mean? The preposition "in" is what confuses me here. Does the sentence mean: empathy cannot be taken for granted when it comes to brain health and well-being?

  • Dryan

    Senior Member
    English - Northeastern U.S.
    empathy in brain health and well-being cannot be taken for granted.
    To me this means: “If you cannot mimic someone’s physical reactions yourself, you will fail to recognize that same reaction in others.”

    If you can’t physically/emotionally express the same feelings as someone else, you will fail to understand them.

    E.g. If someone can’t frown anymore because they’ve had too much Botox, they won't be able to recognize other people frowning at them either.


    Senior Member
    English - England
    I understand what’s being said about the inability to respond to a smile with a smile of your own (because of the effects of Botox) leading to a reduction in your ability even to read other people’s emotions from their facial expressions. But, like Noon2501, I don’t get what the author means by “empathy in brain health and well-being”.
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