Skromanis_whole_thesis.pdf (3.11 MB)
The effect of alcohol intoxication on emotion perception and perceptions of ability
thesisposted on 2023-05-27, 11:12 authored by Skromanis, SA
Alcohol-fuelled violence has become increasingly reported in and 'exploited' by the Australian media. While links between alcohol consumption and violence are well established, the possible mechanisms underlying these negative social behaviours are poorly understood. This study aimed to ascertain whether alcohol intoxication impairs individuals' emotion perception abilities in a manner similar to other clinical populations, such as schizophrenia and traumatic brain injury (TBI), which demonstrate similar neuropathological profiles. A supplementary aim of the study was to examine whether accuracy of appraisals of emotion perception ability are impaired. Following quasi-random assignment to counterbalance for gender, 64 participants were administered either an alcohol (Mage = 24.55, SD = 3.38) or placebo (Mage = 22.70, SD = 4.80) beverage. Emotion perception abilities were then assessed using the Emotion Recognition Task (ERT). Insight into performance was also measured by obtaining confidence ratings from zero to 100% for each viewed emotion. The study found that alcohol intoxicated individuals were less able to correctly identify negative emotions than the non-intoxicated individuals at moderate-to-high levels of emotion intensity. They also demonstrated significantly less insight into their performance regardless of emotion type. These results offer invaluable information to further our understanding of the possible mechanisms underlying alcohol-fuelled violence.
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