Launching Anxious Young Adults: A Specialized Cognitive-Behavioral Intervention for Transitional Aged Youth
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Purpose of Review
There has been growing clinical and research attention to the unique developmental stage of emerging adulthood. This stage is a time of significant change and growth for all individuals, as it includes identity exploration, emotional, behavioral, and financial independence from caregivers, and completion of educational or vocational requirements.
Anxiety disorders are the most common mental health diagnoses among emerging adults, and individuals suffering from these disorders often experience compounding functional impairments across health, financial, and social domains. While evidence-based treatments exist for both child/adolescent anxiety disorders and adult anxiety disorders, no specialized assessment or treatment methods have been established for the unique period of emerging adulthood.
Our review examines literature pertinent to anxiety disorders in emerging adulthood and describes a novel, specialized intervention to address the unique challenges faced by anxious emerging adults. The Launching Emerging Adults Program (LEAP) is a developmentally informed cognitive-behavioral treatment model that aims to simultaneously reduce anxiety symptoms and promote independence. We conclude with a discussion of lessons learned and future directions.
KeywordsEmerging adulthood Anxiety disorders Cognitive-behavioral therapy Developmental transitions Young adulthood Parenting
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
Lauren J. Hoffman and John D. Guerry declare no conflict of interest.
Anne Marie Albano is the Principal Investigator for the Child/Adolescent Anxiety Multimodal Study (CAMELS) (NIMH) cited in this manuscript.
Human and Animal Rights and Informed Consent
This article does not contain any studies with human or animal subjects performed by any of the authors.
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance
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