Anxiety and Atopic Disease: Comorbidity in a Youth Mental Health Setting

Emily M. Becker-Haimes, Kathleen I. Diaz, Bryan A. Haimes, Jill Ehrenreich-May

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Scopus citations


Anxiety frequently co-occurs with atopic diseases (e.g., allergies) in community samples, although data are limited to community and pediatric medical samples. Little work has examined atopy rates among mental health treatment seeking youth or whether youth with comorbid anxiety and atopy present similarly to non-comorbid youth. Using initial intake data from a University-based specialty youth clinic for anxiety and depressive disorders (n = 189), rates of atopic comorbidity were benchmarked against lifetime prevalence estimates in epidemiological samples. Anxiety severity and parental stress were compared between youth with and without atopy. Results indicated high rates of atopy in the clinical sample (51.3 %) relative to population atopy estimates (34.5 %). Anxious youth with atopy exhibited more overall and generalized anxiety symptoms relative to non-atopic youth (ps < .05); parental stress was comparable between atopic and non-atopic anxious youth. This suggests potentially heightened clinical severity for youth with co-occurring anxiety and atopy.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)528-536
Number of pages9
JournalChild Psychiatry and Human Development
Issue number4
StatePublished - Aug 1 2017


  • Anxiety
  • Atopy
  • Youth mental health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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