WTF Is Brain Freeze? 🧠

Henry Belcaster
Henry Belcaster
3 min read

Morning ICEE!



Oh, no..we’re gonna lose him…

Durd, stand up.

Walk it out.

Brain freeze. Wtf is it??

Basically all of your major sensory organs are in your face near your brain.


Well, the closer the important stuff is to your brain, the faster you can respond to your environment.

It’s a matter of survival.

Just think about it:

If your ears were on your feet, it would take that much longer to hear somebody shout ‘FIRE’ in a crowded theater:

The only problem is, an ICEE isn’t trying to kill you.

It’s just one big evolutionary misunderstanding.

So when you slurp down something super cold, it slams into the roof of your mouth and the back of your throat.

This shocks the spot where two of your brain's major arteries are.

The artery that feeds blood to the entire brain – the internal carotid artery:

And the artery that runs up along the front of your brain – the anterior cerebral artery:

When that junction gets too cold, the blood vessels rapidly contract.

So your brain’s like:

The brain sends extra blood to the area to warm things back up.

Unfortunately, this makes those blood vessels expand really quickly:

This rapid blood vessel contraction then expansion is what triggers the trigeminal nerve to scream out in pain.

Lucky for us, the trigeminal nerve is the thing responsible for sensations in your face and the front of your head.

Just look at this thing:

Ignore all the big words.

Trigeminal nerve = yellow.

The biggest nerve in your head.

So ya, that’s why it feels like you’re having a stroke when you’re just trying to enjoy a sweet treat.

The cure?

  • Wait – 30 seconds
  • Warm Water – sip some
  • Wipe – your tongue against the roof of your mouth

Stay Cute,
Henry & Dylan 🌈

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