The authors investigated features of self-statements as predictors of anxiety in children with and without anxiety disorder (AD) and as a mediator of treatment of ADs in children. Children (N = 145) between the ages of 9 and 13 years participated (71 AD youth, 84 controls). Self-statements were classified by valence and content. Results indicated that children's anxious, but not positive or depressed, self-statements significantly predicted anxiety in children with and without AD. For children with AD, changes in anxious self-statements mediated treatment gains, replicating a previously reported finding. A states of mind ratio mediated only 1 outcome measure, and positive and depressive cognitions served no mediating role. The impact of anxious self-talk on children's adjustment and implications for cognitive theory of anxiety in children are discussed.
Copyright 2007 APA.