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Socially anxious feelings sharply increase during adolescence and such feelings have been associated with interpretive biases. Studies in adults have shown that interpretive biases can be modified using Cognitive Bias Modification procedures (CBM-I) and subsequent effects on anxiety have been observed. The current study was designed to examine whether the CBM-I procedure has similar effects in adolescents. Unselected adolescents were randomly allocated to either a positive interpretation training (n = 88) or a placebo-control condition (n = 82). Results revealed that the training was successful in modifying interpretations and effects generalized to a new task. The interpretive bias effects were most pronounced in individuals with a threat-related interpretive bias at pre-test. No effects on state anxiety were observed. The current findings are promising with regard to applying bias modification procedures to adolescents, while further research is warranted regarding emotional effects.
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- Modifying Threat-related Interpretive Bias in Adolescents
Reinout W. Wiers
- Springer US