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Anxious individuals experience time dilation under short intervals

"The main finding from the present study is that the modulation of subjective time perception by stimulus valence in anxious relative to nonanxious individuals is strongly dependent on the duration of the stimulus. With short exposure durations (2 seconds), anxious individuals perceived threat stimuli to last longer than neutral stimuli, whereas non-anxious individuals did not. There were no anxiety-related differences in time perception with stimulus exposures exceeding 2 seconds (i.e., 4- and 8-second durations). We interpret these findings as reflecting enhanced arousal in anxious individuals in response to mild threat stimuli at early stages of stimulus evaluation."[1]


  1. Bar-Haim, Y., Kerem, A., Lamy, D., & Zakay, D. (2010). When time slows down: The influence of threat on time perception in anxiety. Cognition and Emotion, 24(2), 255-263.