Publication details

Imagery-induced negative affect, social touch and frontal EEG power band activity

Authors

KRAUS Jakub ROMAN Robert LACINOVÁ Lenka LAMOŠ Martin BRÁZDIL Milan FREDRIKSON Mats

Year of publication 2020
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source Scandinavian Journal of Psychology
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Social Studies

Citation
Web https://onlinelibrary.wiley.com/doi/full/10.1111/sjop.12661
Doi http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/sjop.12661
Keywords Attachment; mental imagery; negative emotion; social support; theta power
Description Social touch seems to modulate emotions, but its brain correlates are poorly understood. Here, we investigated if frontal power band activity in the electroencephalogram (EEG) during aversive mental imagery is modulated by social touch from one’s romantic partner and a stranger. We observed the highest theta and beta power when imaging alone, next so when being touched by a stranger, with lowest theta and beta activity during holding hands with the loved one. Delta power was higher when being alone than with a stranger or a partner, with no difference between the two. Gamma power was highest during the stranger condition and lower both when being alone and with the partner, while alpha power did not change as a function of social touch. Theta power displayed a positive correlation with electrodermal activity supporting its relation to emotional arousal. Attachment style modulated the effect of touch on the EEG as only secure but not insecure partner bonding was associated with theta power reductions. Because theta power was sensitive to the experimental perturbations, mapped onto peripheral physiological arousal and reflected partner attachment style we suggest that frontal theta power might serve as an EEG derived bio-marker for social touch in emotionally significant dyads.
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