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Stress can affect cognition in many ways, with the outcome (i.e., facilitating or impairing) depending on a combination of factors related to both stress and the cognitive function under study. Among the factors identified as particularly relevant to define the cognitive effects of stress are the intensity or magnitude of stress, its origin (i.e., whether triggered by the task or externally), and its duration (i.e., whether acute or chronically delivered). At the cognitive end, the specific cognitive operation (e.g., implicit or explicit memory, long-term or working memory, goal-directed or habit learning) and information processing phases (e.g., learning, consolidation, and retrieval) are essential as well to define stress effects. The emerging view is that mild stress tends to facilitate cognitive function, particularly in implicit memory or simple declarative tasks or when the cognitive load is not excessive. Exposure to high or very high stress acutely (whether elicited by the cognitive task or experienced before being trained or tested in the task) or chronically impairs the formation of explicit memories and, more generally, of those that require complex, flexible reasoning (as typically observed for hippocampus- and prefrontal cortex-related functions) while improving performance of implicit memory and well-rehearsed tasks (as reported for amygdala-dependent conditioning tasks and for striatum-related processes). In addition to these general principles, there are important individual differences in the cognitive impact of stress, with gender and age being particularly influencing factors. WIREs Cogn Sci 2013, 4:245-261. doi: 10.1002/wcs.1222 For further resources related to this article, please visit the WIREs website. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
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... Glucocorticoids (i.e., cortisol and corticosterone being the most prominent ones in humans and rodents, respectively) promote brain and body functions that facilitate adaptation and recovery when individuals face stressful challenges. Specifically, their life-sustaining functions include the mobilization of substrates for energy metabolism, the suppression of primary immune and inflammatory responses, and the modulation of cognitive processes (de Kloet et al., 2005;Sandi, 2011Sandi, , 2013Ulrich-Lai and Herman, 2009). ...
... MR are involved in the appraisal of novel situations and adaptation processes during the onset of the stress response, while GR, having a 10-fold lower affinity for corticosterone, play a crucial role in the stress response lingering after exposure to an actual stressor. In particular, it facilitates the recovery from stress experiences by mobilizing energy resources and by terminating the stress reaction via negative feedback on multiple nodes of the HPA axis (Kloet and Joëls, 2020;Sandi, 2011Sandi, , 2013. MR and GR act in a coordinated manner when facing a stressor (de Kloet et al., 2019;de Quervain et al., 2019). ...
... In addition, the characterization of specific biobehavioral phenotypes and HPA axis parameters among PTSD patients and/or individuals at risk following trauma might provide an opportunity for clinical intervention in this field. One of the main roles of glucocorticoid stress hormones is to modulate the mnemonic processing of emotionally arousing experiences (de Quervain et al., 2016;Sandi, 2011Sandi, , 2013Sandi and Pinelo-Nava, 2007). Years of research have pointed out that glucocorticoids exert divergent effects depending on the specific memory process (timing) -such as consolidation, retrieval, extinction, and reconsolidation-as well as their context of occurrence in information processing (de Quervain et al., 2009;Joëls et al., 2006). ...
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... This might be because the combined effects of the threat of strangers and the temptation of food changed the original behavior of monkeys, making the attention of the monkeys turn to an intruder for a short time. The present study suggested that mild stress tended to facilitate cognitive function without impairing accuracy or interference control (Shields et al., 2019), particularly in implicit memory or simple tasks (Sandi, 2013), which was illustrated by the fact that, in our experiment, the success rate of completing the finger maze test on the stranger intrusion interference test did not decrease. Perhaps strong threats will affect the accuracy of the monkeys in completing the finger maze test, such as the aggressive actions of strangers. ...
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... In case of simple problems, a linear relationship was found between intensity and performance, however, an inverted U-shaped curve was observed in solving complex problems The effects of stress can vary depending on intensity, endurance, and cognitive load: it can stimulate but also weaken cognitive abilities. So it only increases performance to a certain extent, and only weakens it under high stress (Sandi, 2013). Negative emotions experienced under stress during the performance of mathematical tasks may affect the successful performance of mathematical operations based on higher-order cognitive abilities (Caviola et al., 2017). ...
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... It has been widely accepted that anxiety hinders cognitive performance (Maloney et al., 2014;Moran, 2016;Sandi, 2013). Compared to other types of anxiety (i.e., general, mathematics, test), spatial anxiety is arguably the most understudied. ...
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... The main complaints were anxiety and racing thoughts, followed by poor concentration, memory issues, poor judgment, and only perceiving the negative. It was in line with (81)(82)(83)(84). Stress can shut down many centers in the prefrontal cortex, which orchestrates the brain's activity for intelligent regulation of behavior, thought, and emotion and allows the primitive brain to take over, causing mental paralysis and panic. ...
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