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J Anxiety Disord. 2010 Mar;24(2):178-82. doi: 10.1016/j.janxdis.2009.10.005. Epub 2009 Oct 27.

The effect of single-session interpretation modification on attention bias in socially anxious individuals.

Author information

  • 1Joint Doctoral Program of San Diego State University/University of California, San Diego, CA 92120-4913, United States. namir@mail.sdsu.edu

Abstract

Research suggests that individuals with social anxiety interpret ambiguous social information negatively (e.g., Amir, Foa, & Coles, 1998) and that much negative interpretation bias may share a common mechanism with other information processing biases (e.g., Mathews, Mackintosh, & Fulcher, 1997). In the current study, we examined effectiveness of an Interpretation Modification Program in changing attention biases in socially anxious individuals. Participants were randomly assigned to either an Interpretation Modification Program (IMP) that guided them to make benign interpretations of ambiguous social scenarios or an Interpretation Control Condition (ICC) that did not guide participants' interpretation in either direction. Results revealed that individuals in the IMP group demonstrated greater ability to disengage attention from threat stimuli after completing the program, while individuals in the ICC did not. These results are consistent with the hypothesis that information processing biases in anxious individuals may share a common mechanism that may contribute to the maintenance of anxiety.

Copyright 2009 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

PMID:
19926442
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
PMCID:
PMC2815226
Free PMC Article
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