The role of control in childhood anxiety disorders

Carl F. Weems, Wendy K. Silverman, Ronald M. Rapee, Armando A. Pina

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

72 Scopus citations


This study investigated the role of control beliefs in childhood anxiety disorders. The sample comprised 117 youth aged 9-17 years (86 met diagnostic criteria for an anxiety disorder and the remaining 31 were nonreferred comparison participants). Participants' anxiety levels and their perceptions of control over anxiety-related events (e.g., "things that might be harmful," "feeling shaky or nervous") were assessed. Findings indicated that perceived control over anxiety-related events was significantly negatively correlated with self-reported anxiety levels. Moreover, youth with anxiety disorders reported significantly lower perceived control about anxiety than the nonreferred participants. Findings were consistent with theory and suggest that anxiety disorders in youth are associated with beliefs that anxiety is uncontrollable.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)557-568
Number of pages12
JournalCognitive Therapy and Research
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2003
Externally publishedYes


  • Anxiety
  • Childhood
  • Control
  • Disorders

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology


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