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Manipulation of Physical Pain Tolerance as a Result of Optimistic/Neutral Confederate Cue

Jennifer N. Cramer, Brandon Johnson, Eric Eisenmann, Jessica Cunningham, Phillip Zoladz
Ohio Northern University

Pain is a multifaceted phenomenon which causes discomfort for individuals.  The intrinsically pressing, unpleasant nature of pain makes research to decrease pain valuable.  Positive emotion has been consistently shown to decrease perception of pain.  Additionally, an individual within a group has been shown to have an impact on group emotion and group outcomes.  Tying these ideas together as a group cold pressor was a novel methodology; we attempted to examine the effects of positive cues from a confederate on the subjective pain ratings due to cold pressor induced pain.  This study is currently in progress.  However, we expect that participants who are exposed to positive cues instead of neutral cues from a confederate will have lower pain ratings.  However, due to the potential confounds of group sex differences, optimism scores, and emotion before the experiment we may not achieve the desired results.