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J Anxiety Disord. 2010 Mar;24(2):238-43. doi: 10.1016/j.janxdis.2009.11.002. Epub 2009 Nov 18.

The relationship between anxiety disorders in adults and recalled childhood teasing.

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Anxiety Treatment and Research Centre, St. Joseph's Healthcare Hamilton, Hamilton, ON, Canada L8N 4A6.


This study investigated the relationship between retrospective accounts of childhood teasing and anxiety disorders as well as the relationship between experiences of teasing and more global psychological well-being. Participants (N=377) with social anxiety disorder (SAD), obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD), or panic disorder with or without agoraphobia (PD) were compared on levels of self-reported teasing history using the Teasing Questionnaire-Revised (TQ-R; Storch et al., 2004). Teasing frequency scores were higher for the SAD group compared to both PD and OCD groups. Across all groups, teasing scores were significantly related to increased social anxiety, depression, stress, and greater impairment in functioning. Teasing frequency accounted for unique variance in severity of SAD symptoms even after controlling for concurrent mood, anxiety and stress. These results support and extend previous findings linking childhood teasing to anxiety disorders in adulthood.

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