The treatment of childhood social phobia

The effectiveness of a social skills training-based, cognitive-behavioural intervention, with and without parental involvement

S. H. Spence*, C. Donovan, M. Brechman-Toussaint

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

355 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Fifty children aged 7-14 years with a principal diagnosis of social phobia were randomly assigned to either child-focused cognitive-behaviour therapy (CBT), CBT plus parent involvement, or a wait list control (WLC). The integrated CBT program involved intensive social skills training combined with graded exposure and cognitive challenging. At post-treatment, significantly fewer children in the treatment conditions retained a clinical diagnosis of social phobia compared to the WLC condition. In comparison to the WLC, children in both CBT interventions showed significantly greater reductions in children's social and general anxiety and a significant increase in parental ratings of child social skills performance. At 12-month follow-up, both treatment groups retained their improvement. There was a trend towards superior results when parents were involved in treatment, but this effect was not statistically significant.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)713-726
Number of pages14
JournalJournal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines
Volume41
Issue number6
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2000

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Behaviour therapy
  • Cognitive therapy
  • Cognitive-behaviour therapy
  • Outcome
  • Phobias
  • Social phobia
  • Social skills training

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