Family treatment of childhood anxiety

  • Maid R
  • Smokowski P
  • Bacallao M
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Abstract

Anxiety in childhood and adolescence can cause serious impairment across many settings in a child's life. Childhood anxiety may be impacted by parent-child attachment and by three specific parenting characteristics: acceptance, control and modelling of anxious behaviours. We review two evidence-based family interventions for childhood and adolescent anxiety problems. Cognitive behavioural treatment is currently the most commonly used form of psychotherapy to treat specific anxieties. Global or diffuse anxiety, however, may be better suited to experiential interventions such as communications approaches to family treatment. Experiential therapists examine how dysfunctional family roles exacerbate childhood anxiety. These intervention techniques and their implications for social work practice were discussed. © 2008 The Authors. Journal compilation © 2008 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.

Author-supplied keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Childhood intervention
  • Developmental psychopathology
  • Family therapy

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Authors

  • R. Maid

  • P. Smokowski

  • M. Bacallao

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