Emotion regulation and memory: context-dependent memory deficits following expressive suppression

Chipchase, Susan and McFadden, Aisling (2014) Emotion regulation and memory: context-dependent memory deficits following expressive suppression. In: British Psychological Society: Cognitive Section, 3 - 5 September 2014, Nottingham Trent University.

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Item Type:Conference or Workshop contribution (Presentation)
Item Status:Live Archive

Abstract

Emotion regulation is a process often used by individuals in everyday life. Suppression of emotional expressions allows us to hide the expression of our emotions from others. This can have a deleterious effect on cognition, with memory for emotional materials worse if individuals are instructed to suppress their facial expressions when first viewing this material. Typically, such studies involve participants regulating their emotions when encoding materials into memory, but not when retrieving items from memory. We investigated whether this pattern of memory deficits could result from a change of context with regards to processes of emotion regulation. Participants viewed negative images under conditions of normal viewing or whilst suppressing their emotional expressions. Memory retrieval was by free recall under conditions of expressive suppression or no emotion regulation. We found a significant interaction between emotion regulation at encoding and emotion regulation at retrieval. We replicated previous findings of worse memory for images viewed with expressive suppression at encoding and no emotion regulation at retrieval. However, memory deficits were reversed when expressive suppression was also performed at retrieval, with better memory for images viewed with expressive suppression at encoding and retrieval. In our own life experiences we may try to regulate emotions both when experiencing an event and when retrieving details of that event from memory. These findings demonstrate the importance of considering emotion regulation at both these time points when examining its on cognition and suggest that emotion regulation as a process may lead to context dependent memories.

Keywords:Emotion, Memory, Emotion regulation
Subjects:C Biological Sciences > C800 Psychology
C Biological Sciences > C850 Cognitive Psychology
Divisions:College of Social Science > School of Psychology
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ID Code:19585
Deposited On:14 Nov 2015 20:05

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