The impact of written emotional disclosure on laboratory induced pain
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Previous research has demonstrated the impact of negative emotional states on pain modulation. The direction of this modulation has been shown to correspond to the arousal level and the valence of the emotional state, whether naturally occurring or induced in the laboratory. Other research has consistently linked written emotion disclosure of trauma to better long-term health outcomes among several populations. As most of these studies have focused on long-term health outcome effects of disclosure, little research has been done on the immediate effects of the paradigm on affective or physiological states. This study investigated the short-term effects of written disclosure of trauma on laboratory-induced pain, affective state, and other physiological measures of stress and arousal. Other goals of the study included investigating preexisting differences in pain sensitivity between participants corresponding to lifetime experience of trauma, and determining the degree to which baseline pain testing alters pain sensitivity after emotion induction by creating a conditioned, contextual fear. This is the first study to apply the written emotional disclosure paradigm to laboratory-induced pain.
Creech, Suzannah K. (2004). The impact of written emotional disclosure on laboratory induced pain. Master's thesis, Texas A&M University. Texas A&M University. Available electronically from