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Anxious children in adulthood: a prospective study of adjustment.

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1
Anxiety Treatment Center, Nova Southwestern University, Coral Springs, FL, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To prospectively examine psychosocial functioning in young adulthood for children and adolescents with anxiety disorders.

METHOD:

This 8-year prospective study compared psychosocial functioning in young adults (mean age 22 years) who had histories of early-onset anxiety disorders, comorbid anxiety and depressive disorders, or no history of psychiatric illness (NPI). Follow-up interviews assessed subjects' residential, educational, occupational, and marital status; utilization of mental health services; and psychological status

RESULTS:

Anxious subjects without histories of depression were less likely than NPI controls to be living independently. Anxious-depressed subjects were less likely than controls to be working or in school; more likely than purely anxious subjects to utilize mental health services; and more likely than both anxious and control subjects to report psychological problems, most frequently depression.

CONCLUSIONS:

Overall, results suggest that children with anxiety disorders are relatively well adjusted in young adulthood. However, a history of comorbid depression is prognostic of a more negative outcome.

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