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Psychol Aging. 2009 Dec;24(4):989-94. doi: 10.1037/a0017706.

Use of gaze for real-time mood regulation: effects of age and attentional functioning.

Author information

1
Department of Psychology, Brandeis University, Waltham, MA 02454-9110, USA. dmi@brandeis.edu

Abstract

Older adults show positive preferences in their gaze toward emotional faces, and such preferences appear to be activated when older adults are in bad moods. This suggests that age-related gaze preferences serve a mood regulatory role, but whether they actually function to improve mood over time has yet to be tested. We investigated links between fixation and mood change in younger and older adults, as well as the moderating role of attentional functioning. AgexFixationxAttentional Functioning interactions emerged such that older adults with better executive functioning were able to resist mood declines by showing positive gaze preferences. Implications for the function of age-related positive gaze preferences are discussed.

PMID:
20025412
PMCID:
PMC2827813
DOI:
10.1037/a0017706
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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