Sluggish Cognitive Tempo as a Transdiagnostic Link Between Adult ADHD and Internalizing Symptoms
Gepubliceerd in: Journal of Psychopathology and Behavioral Assessment | Uitgave 3/2022Log in om toegang te krijgen
Although absent from traditional diagnostic nosologies, Sluggish Cognitive Tempo (SCT) may have transdiagnostic utility given its robust associations with ADHD and internalizing symptoms as well as with cognitive impairments common to these conditions. Within-person variation in SCT symptoms may also serve to link ADHD, cognitive deficits, and internalizing psychopathology, however, few studies have utilized intensive longitudinal designs to probe within-person variation in SCT and its links to cognitive deficits and psychopathology. Ecological Momentary Assessment was used to measure between and within-person variance in SCT 4 times per day across 7 days (28 time-points) in 158 college students (approximately 51% with elevated ADHD and/or internalizing symptoms). Participants also completed ratings of current and childhood ADHD symptoms, cognitive function and internalizing psychopathology. Parameters derived from longitudinal multilevel models indexing between and within person variation in SCT were examined as mediators of the associations between (1) ADHD and internalizing symptoms and (2) self-reported cognitive functioning and internalizing symptoms. Results indicated that between-person differences in SCT, but not within-person variability, linked current and childhood ADHD and internalizing symptoms. Similarly, problems in time-management and organization influenced internalizing psychopathology via between-person differences in SCT. Results found that SCT may be a transdiagnostic link bridging mental health comorbidities, cognitive dysfunction, and internalizing psychopathology.