Think memory worsens with age? Then yours will.
Researchers at North Carolina State University have found that senior citizens who think older people should perform poorly on tests of memory actually score much worse than seniors who do not buy in to negative stereotypes about aging and memory loss.
Dr. Tom Hess and a team of researchers from NC State also found that older adults' ability to remember suffers when negative stereotypes are activated in a given situation.
Older adults will perform more poorly on a memory test if they are told that older folks do poorly on that particular type of memory test.
The researchers found that adults between the ages of 60 and 70 suffered more when negative stereotypes were activated than seniors who were between the ages of 71 and 82. However, the 71-82 age group performed worse when they felt stigmatized.