The Feasibility of a Parent Group Treatment for Youth with Anxiety Disorders and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Idit Dekel*, Shirel Dorman-Ilan, Claudia Lang, Eva Bar-David, Hadas Zilka, Tal Shilton, Eli R. Lebowitz, Doron Gothelf

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is an effective treatment for children and adolescents with anxiety disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). Yet CBT is insufficiently effective in approximately half of cases in clinical trials and in a substantial number of cases children refuse to participate in CBT sessions altogether. Parent training offers a promising alternative to direct child therapy. The present study examined the feasibility of a group implementation of SPACE (Supportive Parenting for Anxious Childhood Emotions), a novel parent training approach aimed at reducing parent’s accommodation of children’s anxiety symptoms. Based on parent reports (N = 25), following treatment there was a significant decrease in parental accommodation, in family power struggles and in parental sense of helplessness, as well as a significant reduction in anxiety and OCD symptom severity. Results support the promise of group SPACE treatment and underscore the need for additional clinical trial research.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1044-1049
Number of pages6
JournalChild Psychiatry and Human Development
Volume52
Issue number6
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 2021

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Children
  • Obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD)
  • Supportive parenting for anxious childhood emotions (SPACE)

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