Bad odors stick better than good ones: Olfactory qualities and odor recognition
2009 (English)In: Experimental psychology (Göttingen), ISSN 1618-3169, E-ISSN 2190-5142, Vol. 56, no 6, 375-380 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
The influences of perceived odor qualities on the retention of olfactory information across the adult lifespan were examined. Young (19–36 years), young-old (60–74 years), and old (75–91 years) adults (n = 202) rated a set of unfamiliar odors across a series of perceptual dimensions (i.e., pleasantness, intensity, and irritability) at encoding. The overall results indicated that memory for unpleasant olfactory information was better than that for pleasant odors across the lifespan. Also, participants showed better retention for odors perceived with high intensity and irritability than for odors rated with low or medium scores. Interestingly, the old adults showed selective beneficial memory effects for odors rated as highly irritable. To the extent that perceptions of high irritability reflect an activation of the trigeminal sensory system, this finding suggests that older adults may use trigeminal components in odor information to compensate for age-related impairments in olfactory memory.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Hogrefe & Huber Publishers , 2009. Vol. 56, no 6, 375-380 p.
odor, adult, age, sex, odor recognition memory, odor quality, hedonics, pleasantness, intensity, irritability, trigeminal
Research subject Psychology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-35332DOI: 10.1027/1618-3126.96.36.1995ISI: 000266940200001PubMedID: 19502198OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-35332DiVA: diva2:287026
This work was supported by grants from The Swedish Research Council to Maria Larsson (No. 421-2005-2113).2010-01-162010-01-162016-06-22Bibliographically approved