Eye blink suppression and occurrence during TOT (Tip of the Tongue) states

Kyosuke Fukuda, Misaki Mizuguchi, Takashi Matsuo, Kazunori Shidoji, Takehito Hayami

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The "Tip of the Tongue" (TOT) is a well-known phenomenon in which one cannot recall the name of a familiar person or object but can recall related words. In the TOT state, cognitive processing activities based on relating information are frequently performed. Blinking is suppressed when waiting for information and when inputting or processing information, and instead occurs at the end of the processing phase. However, the relationship between blinking and the TOT state is not yet clear. In this study, we investigated how the timing of blink suppression and occurrence changes during the TOT state. We presented successive facial photographs of famous people interspersed with those of unknown persons. The participant's task was to name the person during recall-stimulus after each of the photographs. The participant's responses were classified as "Recognized," "TOT," and "Not recognized." Our results indicated that blink suppression occurred most frequently while waiting for the recall-stimulus period in "Not recognized" responses, whereas suppression occurred least frequently in TOT responses. We conclude that blink suppression and occurrence is related to memory-system-access processing.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)122-128
Number of pages7
JournalShinrigaku Kenkyu
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2021

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Psychology(all)


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