This is your brain on math if you have high math anxiety. These fMRI images highlight The dorso-posterior insula (INSp) and mmid-cingulate cortex, regions of the brain affected by math anxiety. Figure 1 of ref. 2 (reformatted), licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution License.[2] |

Number estimation images, adapted from ref. 4.(Image rendered by the author using Inkscape). |

"Our results clearly show that uniquely human branches of mathematics interface with an evolutionarily primitive general magnitude system... We were able to show how variations in both advanced arithmetic and geometry skills specifically correlated with variations in our intuitive sense of magnitude."[4]

- How can I resist mentioning that Isaac Newton believed that light propagates "in fits." See, for example, Light, in Charles Hutton, "A Mathematical and Philosphical Dictionary," London, 1795.
- Ian M. Lyons and Sian L. Beilock, "When Math Hurts: Math Anxiety Predicts Pain Network Activation in Anticipation of Doing Math," PLoS ONE, vol. 7, no. 10 (October 31, 2012), doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0048076.
- Stella F. Lourenco, Justin W. Bonny, Edmund P. Fernandez and Sonia Rao, "Nonsymbolic number and cumulative area representations contribute shared and unique variance to symbolic math competence," Proc. Natl. Acad. Sci, Published online before print October 22, 2012, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1207212109.
- Carol Clark, "Higher-math skills entwined with lower-order magnitude sense," Emory University esciencecommons Blog, October 24, 2012.