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The Impact of Cognitive Restructuring on Post-Event Rumination and Its Situational Effect on Socially Anxious Adolescents

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 August 2023

Meng Yu
Department of Psychology, School of Public Health, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510515, P.R. China Department of Psychiatry, Zhujiang Hospital, Southern Medical University, Guangzhou 510282, P.R. China
Yawen Zhu
Key Laboratory of Behavioral and Mental Health of Gansu Province, School of Psychology, Northwest Normal University, Lanzhou 730070, P.R. China
Dingguo Gao
Guangdong Provincial Key Laboratory of Social Cognitive Neuroscience and Mental Health, Department of Psychology, Sun Yat-Sen University, Guangzhou 510006, P.R. China
Qian Xu
Mental Health Education Center, Southwestern University of Finance and Economics, Chengdu 611130, P.R. China
Ye Wang
Changzhou ART Vocational College of Jiangsu Province, Changzhou 213147, P.R. China
Jianping Wang*
Beijing Key Laboratory of Applied Experimental Psychology, Faculty of Psychology, Beijing Normal University, Beijing 100875, P.R. China
Corresponding author: Jianping Wang; Email:
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Post-event rumination (PER) has been seen as a key element in the persistence of social anxiety (disorder). Studies on PER-targeted intervention, e.g., cognitive restructuring (CR), has, however, received little attention in adults, not yet in youth. In addition, previous research showed that, compared to interaction, participants reported higher levels of PER after speech task. The main aim of the present study was to investigate the effect of CR targeting PER among socially anxious (Chinese) adolescents and also to compare the intervention effect between speech and interaction situations. The present study recruited a sample of 73 high socially anxious adolescents aged 12–16 years and then randomly assigned them into speech (n = 37) or interaction (n = 36) group, without control group. PER and social anxiety (SA) were measured before and after CR. Analysis of Covariance (ANCOVA) results showed that adolescents’ PER and SA symptoms were significantly improved with intervention with moderate to high effect size. Furthermore, the decrease in PER could significantly predict the improvement of SA. However, the intervention effect showed no difference between groups. Although no control group was included, one-session CR still showed its potential to improve participants’ PER and SA. Limitations and future directions were discussed.

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Copyright © The Author(s), 2023. Published by Cambridge University Press on behalf of the Australian Association for Cognitive and Behaviour Therapy

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