Empathy, face masks, and violent behaviors.

Have you seen this study?

“Effect of facemasks on empathy and relational continuity: a randomised controlled trial in primary care.”

The authors conclude:

“This study demonstrates that when doctors wearing a facemask during consultations, this has a significant negative impact on the patient’s perceived empathy and diminish the positive effects of relational continuity. Consideration should be taken in planning appropriate use of facemasks in infectious disease policy for primary care and other healthcare professionals at a national, local, or practice level.”

In order words, face mask-wearing decreases empathy in people interacting with someone who hides their face with masks.

This is a no-brainer, actually.

Since the mandate of wearing masks, we just see the eyes. We do not see people smile, for example.

I always like to look at people and give them a big smile. You have no idea what a smile can do to someone who might have a bad day or be in a bad mood.

Smiles are so powerful to cheer someone up! 😊

Lack of empathy leads to violent behavior.

Let’s look at this study:

“The Dialectic Between Empathy and Violence: An Opportunity for Intervention?”


“The authors provide a comprehensive review of the neurobiology of empathy and compare this with the neurobiology of psychopathic predatory violence—the most extreme deficit of empathy.”

“Empathy, or “feeling as another does,” functionally comprises four dimensions. Empathy is (a) an affective state that is (b) isomorphic to another person’s affective state, (c) is elicited by observing or imagining another person’s affective state, and (d) is experienced while remaining cognizant that the other person’s affective state is the source of one’s own affective state.”

“violence is “an aggressive act that causes physical injury” and is the subset of aggression “characterized by the unwarranted infliction of physical harm.”

“A neurodevelopmental hypothesis must also consider the fact that male individuals are much more likely than female individuals to commit certain types of violent crimes.”

This paper is a great read to know more about how a lack of empathy can lead to violent behaviors.

This is common sense. When you lack connection with people, when you no longer care about your family, friends, etc., you become more isolated, lonely, and more at risk of psychotic behaviors.

My point is that mask-wearing may lead to just this.

The face mask wearer is less empathic and therefore increases their risks of developing violent behaviors.

And on top of that, you add the lack of oxygen in the body and brain.

This is a bad combination!

Hebrew 12:2

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

God bless y’all 😊

Dr. Serge

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