Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Infant Sensitivity To Negative Emotional Expressions Develops At Around 6 Months

Date:
August 14, 2008
Source:
Academy of Finland
Summary:
Scientists have discovered important changes in the way that infants react to another person's face at age 5-7 months. Infants aged 5 months react very differently to a fearful face than those aged 7 months.

Scientists working in the Academy-funded Research Programme on Neuroscience (NEURO) have discovered important changes in the way that infants react to another person’s face at age 5–7 months.

Infants aged 5 months react very differently to a fearful face than those aged 7 months. “At the age of 7 months babies will watch a fearful face for longer than a happy face, and their attentiveness level as measured by EEG is higher after seeing a fearful than a happy face. By contrast, infants aged 5 months watch both faces, when they are shown side by side, for just as long, and there is no difference in the intensity of attention in favour of the fearful face,” said Mikko Peltola, researcher at the University of Tampere, at the Academy’s Science Breakfast this week.

It seems that at age 6 months, important developmental changes take place in the way that infants process significant emotional expressions. A fearful face attracts intense attention by the age of 7 months. In addition, it takes longer for infants to shift their attention away from fearful than from happy and neutral faces.

“Our interpretation of this is to suggest that the brain mechanisms that specialise in emotional response and especially in processing threatening stimuli regulate and intensify the processing of facial expressions by age 7 months,” Peltola said.

The emotions conveyed by facial expressions are an important part of infant-parent interaction from childbirth onwards. Another area of interest in the Neuroscience Research Programme is how inherited differences impact the development of perceptual functions in infants. Likewise, scientists in the programme are interested in interindividual variation in mother-child interaction.

The results of the project shed useful new light on emotional reactions related to the perception of human faces and how they develop. Furthermore, the project will help to increase understanding of the development of perceptual functions that are crucial to normal social interaction.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Academy of Finland. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Academy of Finland. "Infant Sensitivity To Negative Emotional Expressions Develops At Around 6 Months." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 August 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080813095720.htm>.
Academy of Finland. (2008, August 14). Infant Sensitivity To Negative Emotional Expressions Develops At Around 6 Months. ScienceDaily. Retrieved August 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080813095720.htm
Academy of Finland. "Infant Sensitivity To Negative Emotional Expressions Develops At Around 6 Months." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/08/080813095720.htm (accessed August 1, 2014).

Share This




More Mind & Brain News

Friday, August 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Dieting At A Young Age Might Lead To Harmful Health Habits

Dieting At A Young Age Might Lead To Harmful Health Habits

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Researchers say women who diet at a young age are at greater risk of developing harmful health habits, including eating disorders and alcohol abuse. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

It's Not Just Facebook: OKCupid Experiments With Users Too

Newsy (July 29, 2014) If you've been looking for love online, there's a chance somebody has been looking at how you're looking. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

How Your Face Can Leave A Good Or Bad First Impression

Newsy (July 29, 2014) Researchers have found certain facial features can make us seem more attractive or trustworthy. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Losing Sleep Leaves You Vulnerable To 'False Memories'

Newsy (July 27, 2014) A new study shows sleep deprivation can make it harder for people to remember specific details of an event. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins