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Appears in Collections:Psychology Journal Articles
Peer Review Status: Refereed
Title: The development of worry throughout childhood: Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children data
Author(s): Caes, Line
Fisher, Emma
Clinch, Jacqui
Tobias, Jon H
Eccleston, Christopher
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Keywords: worry
child development
emotional disruption
Issue Date: May-2016
Date Deposited: 13-Jul-2016
Citation: Caes L, Fisher E, Clinch J, Tobias JH & Eccleston C (2016) The development of worry throughout childhood: Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children data. British Journal of Health Psychology, 21 (2), pp. 389-406.
Abstract: Objectives  Anxiety is a normal part of childhood and adolescence; however, longitudinal research investigating the development of worrisome thoughts throughout childhood is lacking. This study investigated mothers' perspectives on their child's normal development of worry as the cognitive component of anxiety and its impact on child functioning in a longitudinal population-based cohort. Methods  The data for this study were extracted from the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children. Mothers (N = 2,227) reported on their child's worry content, frequency, control, emotional disruption, and interference when their child was 7, 10, and 13 years old using the parent component of the Development and Well-being Assessment. At age 10 and 13, pubertal status was assessed using children's self-report of pubic hair developmental progress.  Results  Mothers reported a peak of worrisome thoughts at 10. Emotional disruption was highest at 10, and the highest level of interference in daily life was observed at 13, especially for girls. Advanced pubertal status and worry frequency were positively associated for boys at 10 and girls at 13. Advanced puberty at 10 was also associated with overall higher worry frequency and emotional disruption.  Conclusions  Findings are discussed within a developmental framework outlining the normal development of worrisome thoughts, associated distress, and interference throughout early adolescence. Increased knowledge of normative worry could be informative to further our understanding of adolescence as a vulnerable period for the development of mental health problems, such as generalized anxiety disorder. © 2015 The British Psychological Society.
DOI Link: 10.1111/bjhp.12174
Rights: This item has been embargoed for a period. During the embargo please use the Request a Copy feature at the foot of the Repository record to request a copy directly from the author. You can only request a copy if you wish to use this work for your own research or private study. This is the peer reviewed version of the following article: Caes, L., Fisher, E., Clinch, J., Tobias, J. H. and Eccleston, C. (2016), The development of worry throughout childhood: Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children data. British Journal of Health Psychology, 21: 389–406. doi: 10.1111/bjhp.12174, which has been published in final form at This article may be used for non-commercial purposes in accordance With Wiley Terms and Conditions for self-archiving.

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