Personality and stress hormones relate to left-right differences in brain structures
The way our brain is organised and functions impacts how we perceive and act on the world around us. Individuals with high levels of the personality trait “Neuroticism”, and/or who have a stress system that is more easily triggered, have a higher risk of developing affective disorders like anxiety and depression. Basic research allows clarification of how personality traits and stress reactivity relate to brain organization and functioning. Whereas results from this type of research do not have immediate practical implications, they may improve our ability to identify and understand brain mechanisms underlying mental health risk factors.
Figure 1. The Big Five Personality Traits Source: www.verywellmind.com, illustration by Joshua Seong
Our findings provide some new pieces in the puzzle of how neuroticism and CAR are reflected in the wiring of our brains. Narrowing down “where to look” in the brain increase our chances to identify brain mechanisms promoting increased risk for affective disorders.