Anxious individuals may have better control in decision making

Washington: Turns out, highly anxious individuals apply more cognitive control when they make a risky decision as compared to less anxious individuals.

20 high and 20 low anxious individuals played a risk game while investigators recorded their brain responses via electroencephalogram during a recently conducted study.

The researchers found higher frontal midline theta power in highly anxious individuals during their decisions, which indicates more cognitive control. Higher frontal midline theta power, in turn, predicted less risky choices.

Lead author Dr. Barbara Schmidt of the Friedrich Schiller University of Jena, said,” We showed that high anxious individuals also perceived risky situations as riskier, which is in line with the higher amount of cognitive control during their risk choices in the game. Obviously, they try to avoid negative outcomes.”

She further said that the study provides a direct link between anxiety, frontal midline theta power, and risky decisions. That is exciting, as it means that frontal midline theta power directly affects behavior.

The full findings of the study appear in the journal Psychophysiology. (ANI)