Parental and family factors as predictors of threat bias in anxious youth

Jennifer B. Blossom, Golda S. Ginsburg, Boris Birmaher, John T. Walkup, Philip C. Kendall, Courtney P. Keeton, Audra K. Langley, John C. Piacentini, Dara Sakolsky, Anne Marie Albano

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The present study examined the relative predictive value of parental anxiety, parents' expectation of child threat bias, and family dysfunction on child's threat bias in a clinical sample of anxious youth. Participants (N = 488) were part of the Child/Adolescent Anxiety Multi-modal study (CAMS), ages 7-17 years (M = 10.69; SD = 2.80). Children met diagnostic criteria for generalized anxiety disorder, separation anxiety and/or social phobia. Children and caregivers completed questionnaires assessing child threat bias, child anxiety, parent anxiety and family functioning. Child age, child anxiety, parental anxiety, parents' expectation of child's threat bias and child-reported family dysfunction were significantly associated with child threat bias. Controlling for child's age and anxiety, regression analyses indicated that parents' expectation of child's threat bias and child-reported family dysfunction were significant positive predictors of child's self-reported threat bias. Findings build on previous literature by clarifying parent and family factors that appear to play a role in the development or maintenance of threat bias and may inform etiological models of child anxiety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)812-819
Number of pages8
JournalCognitive Therapy and Research
Volume37
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Aug 2013

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Child
  • Family functioning
  • Threat bias

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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