Comorbidity of anxiety and depression in youth: A developmental analysis

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Virginia Tech


The purpose of the current study was to examine a model explaining a pathway from anxiety to depression in youth. Additionally, a second model was considered examining specifically the worry component of anxiety and its role in the development of depression. Path analyses were used to examine the relationships between general anxiety and worry and academic competence and functioning, social competence and functioning, attributional style, hopelessness, and depression. In addition, the impact of sex and cognitive ability on these relationships was examined.

Results revealed that anxious and depressive symptomatology were significantly correlated. Further, some support was found to suggest that the significant relationship between self-reported anxiety and depression was partially mediated through social and/or academic variables as well as attributional style and hopelessness. While sex was not found to significantly impact these relationships, cognitive ability did moderate the relationship between worry and academic functioning even when other variables were considered simultaneously. The implications of these findings for treatment and research are discussed.



Children and Adolescents, Depression, Anxiety