Navigation Links
Having trouble sharing or understanding emotions? MU researcher believes affection could help
Date:4/6/2011

COLUMBIA, Mo. Every person has some level of alexithymia, as it is the personality trait which keeps people from sharing or even understanding their own emotions. Now, one University of Missouri researcher's latest study indicates that affectionate communication, such as hugging, could help those who have high levels of alexithymia lead more fulfilling lives.

Colin Hesse, an assistant professor of communication in the MU College of Arts and Science, said previous studies estimate 8 to 10 percent of people suffer from high alexithymia. Those who have high alexithymia have trouble relating to others, as they tend to become anxious around others or avoid forming relationships. Alexithymia is often found with other conditions on the autism spectrum, as well as post-traumatic stress disorders. Studies have shown that alexithymia has been related to eating and panic disorders, as well as substance abuse.

"We know how important it is for people to empathize and be open with the people around us, because that makes someone more competent as a communicator," Hesse said. "We still need to study the best approaches, but we believe that affectionate communication ranging from hugs, touching, or even the posture taken during communication can make a positive impact, even if it only relieves anxiety."

In the paper "Affection Mediates the Impact of Alexithymia on Relationships," published in the journal Personality and Individual Differences, Hesse and Kory Floyd of Arizona State University surveyed 921 people and measured shared affection, attachment levels, and the number of close relationships. The researchers found that even though alexithymia was negatively related to forming relationships, the impact was lessened by giving and receiving higher amounts of affectionate communication.

While alexithymia is still relatively new to the scientific world, some scholars believe it may eventually be added to the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. As a communications expert, Hesse is studying the ways alexithymia sufferers can ease the physical and mental costs of the affliction and succeed at relationships.

Hesse's previous work has shown that affectionate communication releases hormones that relieve stress, and his future studies will be applicable to all forms of communication.

"Because there is so much gray area with alexithymia, the potential for what we learn could have benefits for people with conditions such as emotional distance and autism spectrum disorders," Hesse said. "I want to help alexithymia sufferers understand the undercurrent of the messages sent from other people."


'/>"/>

Contact: Steven Adams
AdamsST@missouri.edu
573-882-8353
University of Missouri-Columbia
Source:Eurekalert  

Related medicine news :

1. Mothers abused during childhood at risk for having low birth weight babies
2. Having a strong community protects adolescents from risky health behaviors
3. Having Relative With Atrial Fibrillation Raises Own Risk
4. Could Having a Bigger Head Help Slow Alzheimers?
5. LASIK Surgeon Having LASIK Surgery
6. New, National Amnesty International Report Finds Appalling U.S. Death Rate for Women Having Babies, Systemic Failures and Shocking Disparities in Maternal Health Care System; Tennessee is 38th Among All States in Maternal Mortality
7. New, National Amnesty International Report Finds Appalling U.S. Death Rate for Women Having Babies, Systemic Failures and Shocking Disparities in Maternal Health Care System; New Jersey is 35th Among All States in Maternal Mortality
8. New, National Amnesty International Report Finds Appalling U.S. Death Rate for Women Having Babies, Systemic Failures and Shocking Disparities in Maternal Health Care System; California 35th Among All States in Maternal Mortality
9. New, National Amnesty International Report Finds Appalling U.S. Death Rate for Women Having Babies, Systemic Failures and Shocking Disparities in Maternal Health Care System; North Carolina is 37th Among All States in Maternal Mortality
10. New, National Amnesty International Report Finds Appalling U.S. Death Rate for Women Having Babies, Systemic Failures and Shocking Disparities in Maternal Health Care System; New Mexico is 49th Among All States in Maternal Mortality
11. New, National Amnesty International Report Finds Appalling U.S. Death Rate for Women Having Babies, Systemic Failures and Shocking Disparities in Maternal Health Care System; Oklahoma is 39th Among All States in Maternal Mortality
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
Related Image:
Having trouble sharing or understanding emotions? MU researcher believes affection could help
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... ... Recognizing that lifestyle medicine is essential to health and healthcare, About.com ... MD, MPH, president of the American College of Lifestyle Medicine, as their first senior ... said Katz. “There is so much opportunity to add years to lives, and life ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... Carlsbad, CA (PRWEB) , ... May 04, 2016 , ... ... has recently partnered with local company MitoXcell in preparation of the launch of her ... day jump start plan is a nutritional guide designed to jump start a new ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... , ... May 04, 2016 , ... The preeminent surgical ... Janice Dickinson needed following breast cancer surgery. In March 2016, the 61-year-old model and ... of breast cancer that occurs in the milk ducts, according to an interview ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... CA (PRWEB) , ... May 04, 2016 , ... Advanced ... technology to help restore its patients’ health, is hosting a free seminar on stem ... will be held at Advanced Spine & Sport, 4601 Telephone Road, Suite 110, Ventura, ...
(Date:5/4/2016)... ... May 04, 2016 , ... ... ankles, and elbows. Engineered with athletes in mind, OMNIFORCE offers high-performance, less ... ineffective circular knitting, common in the industry) produces premium flat-knit construction with ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:5/3/2016)... Research and Markets has announced the addition ... Outlook 2020" report to their offering. ... has improved significantly in past years due to which ... years. Many cancer drugs have been developed by utilization ... expected to be developed with its help. They are ...
(Date:5/3/2016)...  While you may be familiar with watching a film or TV show in high definition, ... 8MP in the Medical Industry.  Ampronix  is a renowned authorized reseller of the medical industry,s ... - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20160502/362730 ... ... ...
(Date:5/3/2016)... 3, 2016  Specialty Silicone Fabricators is offering ... how a cleanroom works. The free visual aid ... and technology. Chris Mazelin ... company, SSF enthusiastically supports the Science, Technology, Engineering ... the next generation of innovators. We want to ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: