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Investigating the mediating role of cognitive emotion regulation in the development of adolescent emotional problems
Örebro University, School of Law, Psychology and Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-6014-5226
Örebro University, School of Law, Psychology and Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-9429-9012
Örebro University, School of Law, Psychology and Social Work.ORCID iD: 0000-0002-9688-5805
2018 (English)In: Nordic Psychology, ISSN 1901-2276, E-ISSN 1904-0016, Vol. 70, no 1, p. 3-16Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Previous research has indicated that cognitive emotion regulation strategies contribute to the development and maintenance of emotional problems in adults and adolescents. However, there is a lack of longitudinal research with adolescent samples, hence knowledge of exactly how these strategies influence the development of emotional problems in adolescence is sparse. This study investigated maladaptive cognitive emotion regulation (cognitive avoidance and repetitive negative thinking) as a potential mediator in the development of anxiety and depressed mood over time in adolescence. Self-reported depressed mood, anxiety, and cognitive emotion regulation strategies were assessed during school hours in a sample of Swedish 10th graders (N=149; 53% girls), with follow-up assessments one and two years later. Repetitive negative thinking and cognitive avoidance formed a unidimensional factor of cognitive emotion regulation. Cognitive emotion regulation was found to mediate the development of both anxiety and depressed mood over time, lending support to the previous findings that cognitive emotion regulation strategies such as cognitive avoidance and repetitive negative thinking might act as transdiagnostic mechanisms in the development of emotional symptoms in adolescence. This suggests that maladaptive forms of cognitive emotion regulation could be important targets in prevention and treatment of emotional problems in adolescence.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Routledge, 2018. Vol. 70, no 1, p. 3-16
Keywords [en]
Emotion regulation, anxiety, depressed mood, adolescence, longitudinal design
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-65648DOI: 10.1080/19012276.2017.1323665ISI: 000425787700002Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85019197348OAI: oai:DiVA.org:oru-65648DiVA, id: diva2:1189556
Available from: 2018-03-12 Created: 2018-03-12 Last updated: 2018-05-22Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Stuck on repeat: Adolescent stress and the role of repetitive negative thinking and cognitive avoidance
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Stuck on repeat: Adolescent stress and the role of repetitive negative thinking and cognitive avoidance
2018 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Stress and stress-related mental health problems such as anxiety and depressive symptoms are common in adolescents and seem to be increasing, especially in mid- to late-adolescent girls. Although adolescence, as a period of rapid growth and profound change, is often marked by an increase in normal stressors (e.g. conflicts with parents, fitting in with peers, increased academic demands), most adolescents do not develop more persis-tent problems with stress. To be able to develop effective preventive interventions there is a need to understand both what adolescents are ascribing their stress to, how different stressor domains relate to outcomes, and why some adolescents go on to develop stress-related mental health problems while others do not.          

This dissertation aimed to answer some of these questions by investigating the role of cognitive avoidance and repetitive negative thinking (RNT) in the development of stress-related mental health problems (Study I & III). It also aimed to develop and validate a shortened version of a questionnaire designed to measure stressor load within different life domains in adolescence (Study II). Findings show that the shortened version of the Adolescents Stress Questionnaire seems to be a valid measure of stressor load within different domains in adolescence. School-related stressors were the most prevalent sources of stress, but social stressors seem to have a stronger link to increases in mental health symptoms. Also, adolescents who report higher levels of distress and stressor load tend to increase their engagement in cognitive avoidance and RNT over time which in turn predicts further increases in mental health symptoms. This suggests that cognitive avoidance and RNT may be important mechanisms in the development of stress-related mental health problems in adoles-cence.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Örebro: Örebro University, 2018. p. 75
Series
Örebro Studies in Psychology, ISSN 1651-1328 ; 41
Keywords
Adolescents stress, cognitive avoidance, repetitive negative thinking, anxiety, depression
National Category
Psychology (excluding Applied Psychology)
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:oru:diva-66859 (URN)978-91-7529-251-9 (ISBN)
Public defence
2018-06-14, Örebro universitet, Långhuset, Hörsal L2, Fakultetsgatan 1, Örebro, 13:15 (Swedish)
Opponent
Supervisors
Available from: 2018-05-04 Created: 2018-05-04 Last updated: 2018-05-22Bibliographically approved

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Anniko, MalinBoersma, KatjaTillfors, Maria

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