The detrimental effects of chronic stress are gaining increasing attention. In addition to human suffering, stress has economic impact and long-term consequences on society and people in general.
Moodmetric is a company which helps individuals to understand how their bodies react to different cognitive and emotional stimuli. The Moodmetric measurement enables early recognition and prevention of chronic stress.
The Moodmetric smart ring is a device for measuring with ease and accuracy electrodermal activity (EDA), as the following clinical research confirms.
Research at Tampere University: Moodmetric technology shows great promise in identifying stress levels in a work environment
The Personal Health Informatics research group at Tampere University, Finland, has studied the effects of cognitive stress on the body in a simulated research environment.
In the research setting individuals were exposed to three different levels of emotional and cognitive stress: calm, active, and intense. The impact of the different simulated situations on the individuals was analysed by measuring electrodermal activity (EDA) and a questionnaire. The purpose of the research was to find out how accurate the Moodmetric smart ring is at measuring EDA in comparison to the traditional laboratory methods. In addition, the aim was also to study how well the self-assessments of the individuals correlated with the test results. Machine learning was used to analyse the test results.
The preliminary results are encouraging: ‘The initial conclusions appear to support the hypothesis that the Moodmetric smart ring can provide information on the stressfulness of work-related situations almost as accurately as respective laboratory equipment designed to measure EDA’, says Hannu Nieminen, D.Sc. and head of the research.
Overall the research has brought about some very interesting information, including the observation that individuals are less able to recognize and interpret the level of stress they are experiencing in a particular situation than the measuring devices reading their EDA.
The results of the research will be published at the conference for Engineering in Medicine and Biology in Berlin in July 2019.
Research at University of Jyväskylä: The Moodmetric index correlates with the stress hormone cortisol
There is another research ongoing in Finland by Jyväskylä University, in collaboration with a private health clinic called Pihlajanlinna, which appears to confirm the accurateness of the Moodmetric index in clinical research.
A cognitive stress test, Trier Mental Challenge, was used to measure the ability of the participants to do arithmetic calculations, which grew more difficult over a period of ten minutes. The participants’ cortisol levels were measured from saliva before and after taking the cognitive test, and the Moodmetric smart ring was worn throughout the test. On average, the MM level variated between 61±15 and the changes in cortisol were 12±71%. The relative change in cortisol levels correlated positively with the MM level (r=.71, p=0.005, see picture). The more the level of cortisol rose during the test, the higher the MM levels were.
The full research results by the team from the Faculty of Sport and Health Sciences at the University of Jyväskylä will become available later in the year.
Find our more about what a stress reaction means. How does is affect our bodies, how can it be measured and what is the connection with the cortisol level?
The sympathetic nervous system triggers the fight-or-flight response before we consciously make any decision on how to act. Many things happen very fast. First the hormone epinephrine (also known as adrenaline) and norepinephrine (also called noradrenaline) are released into our system. We notice the effects: Rapid pulse and respiration increase oxygen intake for fast action. Blood pressure goes up and extra oxygen is sent to the brain, increasing alertness. Sight, hearing, and other senses become sharper.
Blood sugar (glucose) and fats from energy stores are released into the bloodstream to give us the extra power we need. Skin temperature goes up and the increased sweat on the palms of our hands improves our grip– should we need to climb a tree to flee.
All these reactions are caused by some very fast chemical processes in our body. Our preparedness for the fight is automatic and we flee away from threat without conscious cognitive processing.
What happens next? If a fight is unavoidable, the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA axis or HTPA axis) is activated after the first surge of adrenaline subsides. The HPA axis keeps the sympathetic nervous system up and running as long as needed, until the fight is over.
This adrenal cortex produces hormones that contribute to the release of cortisol. Cortisol is a steroid hormone that has several functions, including the controlling of the blood sugar level during stress reaction. The hormonal effects induced by the adrenal cortex are called indirect stress responses as they work through the bloodstream. The effects of these responses take place within 20-30 seconds.
Find out more about Moodmetric in research
Contact: Niina Venho ([email protected]) +358 40 710 0487