Forgetting Haptic Information: A Comparative Study Between Younger and Older Adults

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Abstract

The aim of this study was to analyze the effect of age on retaining information that is processed in the haptic submodality at different time intervals. The study included 72 adults: 36 adults aged between 20 and 30 years (21.7 ± 2.77 years) and 36 older adults aged over 60 years (70.3 ± 5.17 years) of both genders with preserved cognitive status and able to read and write. Each participant had access to a list of 15 objects. Free recall and pattern recognition tasks were performed 1, 10, or 20 min after exposure to the haptic stimuli. The set of 15 objects was randomized and counterbalanced over the 3 time intervals. The results showed a lower number of hits in older adults as the retention interval increased in both memory measures. When the number of hits in free recall and recognition among younger and older adults were compared for each retention interval, significant differences were found after intervals of 10 and 20 min, indicating that the information retention capacity after a 10-min interval decreased in the older adults.

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