This study examined age differences in phasic heart rate in response to neutral, negative and positive pictures. Heart rate changes and subjective ratings were analyzed in 22 middle-aged (40-55 years) and 30 older (56-78 years) participants. The effects of valence on the HR pattern across time were similar to that obtained by Bradley and co-workers. Conversely to previous studies, we did not report any age-related reduction in cardiac reactivity. Instead, when viewing positive pictures, the triphasic wave form appeared in the group of older adults, but for younger participants, it was replaced by a sustained deceleration. These results were interpreted in the light of the socioemotional selectivity theory.
- Fysiologi (30106)
- Psykologi (50101)