To think or not to think about trauma? An experimental investigation into unconscious thought and intrusion development

  • Krans J
  • Bos M
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Abstract

The present study tested whether unconscious thought (versus conscious thought) would reduce frequency of intrusions from an analogue trauma film. Participants viewed a distressing film and were subsequently instructed to think about the film deliberately (conscious thought), to perform a demanding task while knowing that the film information was important later on the experiment (unconscious thought), or to perform the task while believing the experiment had ended (control condition). Afterwards, sequence memory and intrusions of the film were measured. In line with predictions, the results showed significant lower intrusion frequency in the unconscious thought condition compared to both conscious thought and mere distraction. As there were no differences in sequence memory for the film, it remains unclear what mechanism was responsible for this effect. These results encourage further research into a new and exciting area. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved) (journal abstract)

Author-supplied keywords

  • 1
  • Intrusions
  • Unconscious Thought T
  • analogue trauma
  • au
  • australia
  • correspondence to
  • dr
  • edu
  • email
  • experimental psychopathology
  • intrusions
  • j
  • julie krans
  • krans
  • ptsd
  • school of psychology
  • sydney nsw 2052
  • unconscious thought theory
  • university of new south
  • unsw
  • wales

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Authors

  • Julie Krans

  • Maarten W. Bos

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