Effects of alcohol on social anxiety in women: Cognitive versus physiological processes

David Abrams, G. Terence Wilson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Randomly assigned 32 female social drinkers (18-25 yr old undergraduates) to 4 conditions in a 2 × 2 factorial design that controlled for drink content and expectations. Ss were administered either an alcoholic or a nonalcoholic beverage and were led to believe that their drinks contained or did not contain alcohol. After finishing their drinks Ss participated in a study of social anxiety in which they were requested to interact with a male confederate of the experimenter. Multiple measures, including heart rate, skin conductance, and overt behavioral and self-report responses, were recorded. Ss who expected alcohol showed significant elevations in physiological arousal and were rated as more anxious on observational measures of social behavior. Self-report measures failed to yield any differences among groups. Implications for the tension reduction theory of alcohol use and the importance of multiple response measures are discussed. (11/2 p ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2006 APA, all rights reserved).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)161-173
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Abnormal Psychology
Volume88
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 1979

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Physiological Phenomena
Anxiety
Alcohols
Self Report
Social Behavior
Beverages
Arousal
Heart Rate
Skin
Alcohol
Physiological Processes
Self-report

Keywords

  • drink content & expectations for alcoholic vs nonalcoholic beverages, social anxiety, female college students

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)

Cite this

Effects of alcohol on social anxiety in women : Cognitive versus physiological processes. / Abrams, David; Wilson, G. Terence.

In: Journal of Abnormal Psychology, Vol. 88, No. 2, 04.1979, p. 161-173.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

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