Alcohol helps with creativity, but only in small amounts - study

Whisky guitar
Weakening your ability to concentrate makes it less likely you'll get stuck on a problem. Photo credit: Getty

Struggling to finish that poem, song or painting? Try getting a buzz on.

Scientists in Austria have found a small amount of alcohol can enhance a person's creativity.

Tests on 132 people found consuming enough booze to raise their blood-alcohol level to 0.03 improved their "creative problem solving".

"In creative problem solving, problems can often only be solved after a restructuring of the problem representation," the study, published in journal Consciousness and Cognition, said.

"When initial solution attempts get on the wrong track, this can cause blocks to immediate problem solving, which is known as mental fixation.

"These fixations typically fade with time. In a similar way, alcohol may reduce fixation effects by loosening the focus of attention."

In other words, weakening your ability to concentrate makes it less likely you'll get stuck on a problem - such as a tough rhyme.

"Alcohol's ability to reduce cognitive control leads to more spontaneous 'eureka' moments."

But booze didn't help with "divergent thinking" - the ability to come up with new, original ideas.

So don't sit down with a glass of whisky and a blank slate; get started sober, and grab a drink when you start to get stuck.

Newshub.

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