Treatment of Anxiety in Children and Adolescents
Purpose of Review
The purpose of this review is to provide an up-to-date summary of the treatment of anxiety disorders in children and adolescents. We review the evidence in relation to treatments deemed to be efficacious followed by novel interventions that hold promise as potentially efficacious treatments.
The latest research suggests that cognitive-behavioural therapy is an efficacious treatment, whether delivered individually, in groups, via the computer or internet, within the classroom, or in brief, intensive formats or over longer durations. Pharmacological treatments such as SSRIs and SNRIs are also efficacious but negative side events may dampen enthusiasm for their use. Augmentation of exposure therapy with D-Cycloserine, cognitive bias modification interventions, interpersonal therapy and ACT/mindfulness are promising but require more research to establish their efficacy.
The main conclusion is that personalised approaches are needed to identify the most effective intervention, or combination thereof, for each anxious youth within a stepped model of care that provides access to evidence-based services for different levels of need.
KeywordsAnxiety Treatment Cognitive-behavioural therapy Children Adolescents
Compliance with Ethical Standards
Conflict of Interest
The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.
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.
References and recommended reading
Papers of particular interest, published recently, have been highlighted as: • Of importance •• Of major importance
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