Efficacy of Child-Focused and Parent-Focused Interventions in a Child Anxiety Prevention Study

Ellin Simon*, Susan Maria Bögels, Jannie Marisol Voncken

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

35 Citations (Web of Science)


This study examined anxiety development in median- (n = 74) and high-anxious children (n = 183) aged 8–13, the effect of parent- and child-focused preventive interventions on child/parental anxiety, and the effect of parental anxiety on child anxiety. High-anxious children were randomized into a parent-focused (n = 69), child-focused (n = 58) or non-intervention (n = 56) group. Families completed a pretest and 1- and 2-year follow-ups. Children selected as high-anxious or at risk were found to remain more susceptible to having anxiety problems and developing anxiety disorders than median-anxious children. Both intervention types showed favorable outcomes compared to no intervention on the number of “ADIS improved” children. These findings underline the need for effective preventive interventions for child anxiety. General improvements over time were found for symptoms of child and parental anxiety, however, and parental anxiety did not predict improvement in child anxiety after controlling for intervention. Therefore, it may not be necessary to focus on parental anxiety in interventions aimed at preventing child anxiety.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)204-219
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 7 Mar 2011
Externally publishedYes


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