The effects of yelling on the brain (A comprehensive insight)

The current blogspot will answer the question “what are the effects of yelling on the brain?”. It will be based  on the topics the effects of yelling on brain development, the effects of yelling on neurotransmitters and the effects of yelling on human psychology.

The effects of yelling on brain development

Yelling has the following effects on brain development:

  • Yelling results in neurocognitive brain changes in humans
  • Yelling results in neuropsychological brain changes in humans

Researchers (Edwards et al., 2003)  have highlighted that the severity of the changes that occur in brain development as a result of yelling depends upon genetic predisposition and the frequency and intensity of yelling.

The Neurocognitive Brain Changes as a Result of Yelling

The following neurocognitive brain changes occur as a result of yelling:

  • Exposure to yelling and verbal abuse is associated with increased grey matter volume in superior temporal gyrus.
  • Yelling affects the wernickes and frontal area of the brain in young adults that results in altered executive functioning and imoaired language development.
  • Yelling results in reduction in fractional anisotropy in the accurate fasciculus region of the brain.
  • Yelling results in impaired development of the auditory association cortex and thus results in deterioration of language processing abilities among individuals.
  • Yelling results in significant changes in the integrity of neural pathways in the human brain that negatively affect language processing and speech development .
  • Yelling increases the activity of the amygdala region of the brain that is responsible for the emotional reactions.
  • Yelling increases the release of stress related hormones and neurotransmitters in the brain.
  • Yelling increases muscular tension as the brain signals to the limbic system for the fight/flight response.

Research studies have also highlighted the neurocognitive changes in the brain as a result of yelling. The white matter tract regions in the brain get significantly altered due to the negative effect of yelling. The results of the study revealed changes in the left hippocampus, superior temporal gyrus and arcuate fasciculus (Tomoda et al., 2011).

Further researchers have empirically validated the neurocognitive changes in brain development due to verbal abuse, yelling and shouting. Modification of brain development due to verbal aggression has been reported by Teicher, Tomoda and Anderson (2006).

Moreover a frequent exposure to yelling and shouting has been related to changes in the brain structure resulting in impaired brain functionality. Researchers have reported a reduced volume of hippocampal region in adults, decreased size of corpus callosum, changes in the neural pathways and grey matter regions as an effect of increased exposure to yelling and shouting among humans (Bellis et al., 2002; Bremer et al., 1997).

The Neuropsychological Brain Changes due to Yelling 

Yelling results in the following neuropsychological changes in brain:

  • Experiencing Yelling results in decreased verbal IQ and verbal comprehension index among humans. 
  • Due to frequent experience of yelling and verbal abuse, the levels of depression, dissociation and limbic irritability.
  • Due to yelling, psychopathology in the form of somatization and anxiety occurs due to neurocognitive changes in the brain.
  • Experiencing yelling at early years in life results in impaired communication skills and language development.
  • Due to excessive yelling, the amygdala and limbic system keep the body prepared for an emotional reaction and consider the environment as uncongenial.

Research studies have also advocated yelling to be an empirically validated cause of neuropsychological changes in the brain (Post et al., 2001). Yelling as a cause of psychopathology has been studied by Kendler, Kuhn and Prescot (2004).

Yelling as a host of developing psychological issues related to both overt and covert behaviors has been studied by many researchers. The psychopathology in human behavior as a function of alterations in human brain structure has been advocated by many researchers (Sansone, Sansone & Wiederman, 1995).


The current blogspot answered the question “what are the effects of yelling on the brain?”. We learned that experiencing constant yelling and verbal abuse leads to many neurocognitive and neuropsychological changes in the human brain. The structural changes in the hippocampus, the amygdala and the grey matter alter human behavior and the neuro chemical state of the human body.

Frequently Asked Questions: The effects of yelling on the brain

Can shouting cause brain damage?

Yes shouting causes structural and functional changes in brain development. It also alters the normal growth of the brain among children. It results in disturbed cognitive functioning and psychopathology.

What happens to the brain when you scream?

Screaming activates the part of the brain that is related to handling danger situations. The auditory part of the brain gets activated to manage and respond to loud signals of acoustics and amygdala, the emotional part of the brain.

Is shouting good for health?

No shouting is not good for health. It can damage vocal cords. It can also affect the heart and blood pressure. It can disturb your interpersonal relationships. So too much hostility, yelling, shouting and anger is not good for both physical and emotional health.


Tomoda, A., Sheu, Y. S., Rabi, K., Suzuki, H., Navalta, C. P., Polcari, A., & Teicher, M. H. (2011). Exposure to parental verbal abuse is associated with increased gray matter volume in superior temporal gyrus. Neuroimage, 54, S280-S286

Choi, J., Jeong, B., Rohan, M. L., Polcari, A. M., & Teicher, M. H. (2009). Preliminary evidence for white matter tract abnormalities in young adults exposed to parental verbal abuse. Biological psychiatry, 65(3), 227-234.

Andersen, S. L., Tomada, A., Vincow, E. S., Valente, E., Polcari, A., & Teicher, M. H. (2008). Preliminary evidence for sensitive periods in the effect of childhood sexual abuse on regional brain development. The Journal of neuropsychiatry and clinical neurosciences, 20(3), 292-301.

Edwards VJ, Holden GW, Felitti VJ, et al: Relationship between multiple forms of childhood maltreatment and adult mental health in community respondents: results from the adverse childhood experiences study. Am J Psychiatry 2003; 160:1453–1460

Post RM, Leverich GS, Xing G, et al: Developmental vulnerabilities to the onset and course of bipolar disorder. Dev Psychopathol 2001; 13:581–598

Sansone RA, Sansone LA, Wiederman M: The prevalence of trauma and its relationship to borderline personality symptoms and self-destructive behaviors in a primary care setting. Arch Fam Med 1995; 4:439–442

Kendler KS, Kuhn JW, Prescott CA: Childhood sexual abuse, stressful life events and risk for major depression in women. Psychol Med 2004; 34:1475–1482

De Bellis MD, Keshavan MS, Spencer S, et al: N-acetylaspartate concentration in the anterior cingulate of maltreated children and adolescents with PTSD. Am J Psychiatry 2000; 157:1175–1177

Bremner JD, Randall P, Vermetten E, et al: Magnetic resonance imaging-based measurement of hippocampal volume in posttraumatic stress disorder related to childhood physical and sexual abuse: a preliminary report. Biol Psychiatry 1997; 41:23–32

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