Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
Home
Hostname: page-component-54cdcc668b-9glzh Total loading time: 0.444 Render date: 2021-03-09T05:56:14.568Z Has data issue: true Feature Flags: { "shouldUseShareProductTool": true, "shouldUseHypothesis": true, "isUnsiloEnabled": true, "metricsAbstractViews": false, "figures": false, "newCiteModal": false, "newCitedByModal": true }

Interpretation Bias and Anxiety in Childhood: Stability, Specificity and Longitudinal Associations

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  27 September 2010

Cathy Creswell
Affiliation:
University of Reading, UK
Thomas G. O'Connor
Affiliation:
University of Rochester Medical Center, USA
Corresponding
E-mail address:

Abstract

Background: Biases in the interpretation of ambiguous material are central to cognitive models of anxiety; however, understanding of the association between interpretation and anxiety in childhood is limited. To address this, a prospective investigation of the stability and specificity of anxious cognitions and anxiety and the relationship between these factors was conducted. Method: Sixty-five children (10–11 years) from a community sample completed measures of self-reported anxiety, depression, and conduct problems, and responded to ambiguous stories at three time points over one-year. Results: Individual differences in biases in interpretation of ambiguity (specifically “anticipated distress” and “threat interpretation”) were stable over time. Furthermore, anticipated distress and threat interpretation were specifically associated with anxiety symptoms. Distress anticipation predicted change in anxiety symptoms over time. In contrast, anxiety scores predicted change in threat interpretation over time. Conclusions: The results suggest that different cognitive constructs may show different longitudinal links with anxiety. These preliminary findings extend research and theory on anxious cognitions and their link with anxiety in children, and suggest that these cognitive processes may be valuable targets for assessment and intervention.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © British Association for Behavioural and Cognitive Psychotherapies 2010

Access options

Get access to the full version of this content by using one of the access options below.

References

Barrett, P. M., Dadds, M. R. and Rapee, R. M. (1996). Family treatment of childhood anxiety: a controlled trial. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 64, 333342.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Barrett, P. M., Rapee, R. M., Dadds, M. M. and Ryan, S. M. (1996). Family enhancement of cognitive style in anxious and aggressive children. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 24, 187203.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Beck, A. T., Emery, G. and Greenberg, R. L. (1985). Anxiety Disorders and Phobias: a cognitive perspective. New York: Basic Books.Google Scholar
Bögels, S. M. and Zigterman, D. (2000). Dysfunctional cognitions in children with social phobia, separation anxiety disorder and generalised anxiety disorder. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 28, 205211.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Chorpita, B. F., Albano, A. M. and Barlow, D. H. (1996). Cognitive processing in children: relationship to anxiety and family influences. Journal of Clinical Child Psychology, 25, 170176.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Chung, H., Elias, M. and Schneider, K. (1998). Patterns of individual adjustment changes during middle school transition. Journal of School Psychology, 36, 83101.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Creswell, C., O'Connor, T. and Brewin, C. (2006). A longitudinal investigation of maternal and child “anxious cognitions”. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 30, 135147.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Creswell, C., Schniering, C. and Rapee, R. (2005). Threat interpretation in anxious children and their mothers: group and treatment effects. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 43, 13751381.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Eley, T. C., Gregory, A. M., Lau, J. Y. F., McGuffin, P., Napolitano, M., Rijsdijk, F. V. and Clark, D. M. (2008). In the face of uncertainty: a twin study of ambiguous information, anxiety and depression in children. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 36, 5565.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Goodman, R. (1997). The Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire: a research note. Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry, 38, 581586.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Goodman, R. (2001). Psychometric properties of the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 40, 13371345.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Hadwin, J. A., Garner, M. and Perez-Olivas, G. (2006). The development of information processing biases in childhood anxiety: a review and exploration of origins in parenting. Clinical Psychology Review, 26, 876894.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Huesmann, L. R. and Guerra, N. G. (1997). Children's normative beliefs about aggression and aggressive behaviour. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 72, 408419.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kazdin, A. E. (1981). Assessment techniques for childhood depression: a critical appraisal. Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 20, 358375.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Kendall, P. C. (1994). Treating anxiety disorders in children: results of a randomised clinical trial. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 50, 672689.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kendall, P. C. and Treadwell, K. R. H. (2007). The role of self-statements as a mediator in treatment for youth with anxiety disorders. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 75, 380389.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Kindt, M. and Van Den Hout, M. (2001). Selective attention and anxiety: a perspective on developmental issues and the causal status. Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment, 23, 193202.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Kovacs, M. (1979). The Children's Depression Inventory. Pittsburgh, PA: University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine.Google ScholarPubMed
Lansford, J. E., Malone, P. S., Dodge, K. A., Crozier, J. C., Pettit, G. S. and Bates, J. E. (2006). A 12-year prospective study of patterns of social information processing problems and externalising behaviours. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 34, 715724.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Lochman, J. E. and Dodge, K. A. (1994). Social-cognitive processes of severely violent, mode-rately aggressive, and nonaggressive boys. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 62, 366374.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Mathews, A. and Mackintosh, B. (2000). Induced emotional interpretation bias and anxiety. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 109, 602615.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Muris, P., Jacques, P. and Mayer, B. (2004). The stability of threat perception abnormalities and anxiety disorder symptoms in non-clinical children. Child Psychiatry and Human Development, 34, 251265.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Muris, P., Luermans, J., Merckelbach, H. and Mayer, B. (2000). “Danger is lurking everywhere”: the relation between anxiety and threat perception abnormalities in normal children. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 31, 123136.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Muris, P., Merckelbach, H. and Damsma, E. (2000). Threat perception bias in nonreferred, socially anxious children. Journal of Clinical Child Psychology, 29, 348359.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Muris, P., Rapee, R. M., Meesters, C., Shouten, E. and Geers, M. (2003). Threat perception abnormalities in children: the role of anxiety disorders symptoms, chronic anxiety, and state anxiety. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 17, 271287.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Nolen-Hoeksema, S., Girgus, J. S. and Seligman, M. E. (1986). Learned helplessness in children: a longitudinal study of depression, achievement, and explanatory style. Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 51, 435442.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Nolen-Hoeksema, S., Girgus, J. S. and Seligman, M. E. P. (1992). Predictors and consequences of childhood depressive symptoms: a 5-year longitudinal study. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 101, 405422.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Robinson, N. S., Garber, J. and Hilsman, R. (1995). Cognitions and stress: direct and moderating effects on depressive versus externalizing symptoms during the junior high school transition. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 104, 453463.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Saylor, C. F., Finch, A. J., Spirito, A. and Bennett, B. (1984). The Children's Depression Inventory: a systematic evaluation of psychometric properties. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 52, 955967.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Shrout, P. E. and Fleiss, J. L. (1979). Intraclass correlations: uses in assessing rater reliability. Psychological Bulletin, 8, 420428.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
Spence, S. H. (1997). Structure of anxiety symptoms among children: a confirmatory factor-analytic study. Journal of Abnormal Psychology, 106, 280297.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Spence, S. H. (1998). A measure of anxiety symptoms among children. Behaviour, Research and Therapy, 36, 545566.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Tabachnick, B. G. and Fidell, L. S. (1996). Using Multivariate Statistics (3rd ed.). New York: Harper Collins College Publishers.Google Scholar
Taghavi, M. R., Neshat-Doost, H. T., Moradi, A. R., Yule, W. and Dalgleish, T. (1999). Biases in visual attention in children and adolescents with clinical anxiety and mixed anxiety-depression. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 27, 215223.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Turner, J. E. and Cole, D. A. (1994). Developmental differences in cognitive diathesis for child depression. Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, 22, 1532.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Waters, A. M., Wharton, T. A., Zimmer-Gembeck, M. and Craske, M. (2008). Threat-based cognitive biases in anxious children: comparison with non-anxious children before and after cognitive-behavioural treatment. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 46, 358374.CrossRefGoogle ScholarPubMed
Submit a response

Comments

No Comments have been published for this article.

Full text views

Full text views reflects PDF downloads, PDFs sent to Google Drive, Dropbox and Kindle and HTML full text views.

Total number of HTML views: 95
Total number of PDF views: 156 *
View data table for this chart

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between September 2016 - 9th March 2021. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Send article to Kindle

To send this article to your Kindle, first ensure no-reply@cambridge.org is added to your Approved Personal Document E-mail List under your Personal Document Settings on the Manage Your Content and Devices page of your Amazon account. Then enter the ‘name’ part of your Kindle email address below. Find out more about sending to your Kindle. Find out more about sending to your Kindle.

Note you can select to send to either the @free.kindle.com or @kindle.com variations. ‘@free.kindle.com’ emails are free but can only be sent to your device when it is connected to wi-fi. ‘@kindle.com’ emails can be delivered even when you are not connected to wi-fi, but note that service fees apply.

Find out more about the Kindle Personal Document Service.

Interpretation Bias and Anxiety in Childhood: Stability, Specificity and Longitudinal Associations
Available formats
×

Send article to Dropbox

To send this article to your Dropbox account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Dropbox.

Interpretation Bias and Anxiety in Childhood: Stability, Specificity and Longitudinal Associations
Available formats
×

Send article to Google Drive

To send this article to your Google Drive account, please select one or more formats and confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your <service> account. Find out more about sending content to Google Drive.

Interpretation Bias and Anxiety in Childhood: Stability, Specificity and Longitudinal Associations
Available formats
×
×

Reply to: Submit a response


Your details


Conflicting interests

Do you have any conflicting interests? *