Some theories have suggested a higher orienting of attention toward threatening stimuli in anxious individuals. This attentional bias (AB) has been investigated by using different stimuli and paradigms, obtaining inconsistent results that could depend on the different stimuli used and the cultural background. No study so far has examined the impact of three different types of stimuli by using an Emotional Spatial Cueing Paradigm (ESCP). Aims of the present study were to evaluate the AB in Italian high trait anxiety individuals (HA) by using these three different types of emotional stimuli with an ESCP. 36 HA and 31 low trait anxiety individuals (LA) completed three experiments, each using the ESCP with one of the three cue types (pictures, faces, words) with threatening vs. neutral content. Attentional indexes of engagement and disengagement were calculated in each experiment according to Koster et al. (2006). A Group (HA, LA) 9 Experiment (pictures, faces, words) 9 Validity (valid, invalid) 9 Emotionality (threatening, neutral) ANOVA showed the main effects of Experiment, Validity, Emotionality and the Group 9 Experiment 9 Validity 9 Emotionality interaction. A Group (HA, LA) ANOVA on Engagement and Disengagement scores for each Experiment showed that HA presented lower attentional engagement than the LA in the Face Experiment. This is the first study assessing AB using three different types of stimuli. The results highlight only a slower engagement toward threatening faces in HA. To investigate cultural differences in the AB toward various types of emotional stimuli, future studies could replicate this experiment in other countries.
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|Titolo:||Attentional bias toward threatening stimuli in Italian anxious individuals: Evidences from an Emotional Spatial Cueing using three types of emotional stimuli|
|Data di pubblicazione:||2018|
|Appare nella tipologia:||01h Abstract in rivista|