Targeting Common Factors Across Anxiety and Depression Using the Unified Protocol for the Treatment of Emotional Disorders in Adolescents

Ilana Seager, Amelia M. Rowley, Jill Ehrenreich-May

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations

Abstract

Clinical approaches to mood and anxiety disorders in children and adolescents have historically been confined to either diagnosis- [e.g., for obsessive-compulsive disorder vs. generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), etc.] or domain-specific (e.g., for anxiety disorders vs. depressive disorders) treatments. However, as conceptualizations of mental illness shift towards a more dimensional model [e.g., the recent Research Domain Criteria (RDoC) from the National Institutes of Health], transdiagnostic treatments, such as the unified protocol for the treatment of emotional disorders in adolescents (UP-A; Ehrenreich et al. in Child Fam Behav Ther 31(1):20-37, 2008), are gaining support in the empirical literature. This paper reviews the common treatment targets across three emotional disorders commonly found in adolescence: GAD, social anxiety disorder, and major depressive disorder. In particular, similarities and differences across potential treatment mechanisms, including cognitive and information processing deficits, problem-solving difficulties, and avoidance strategies are examined. Finally, the case of 17-year-old "Andrea" is presented to demonstrate how transdiagnostic approaches like the UP-A can be effective in treating a range of emotional disorders in youth.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-83
Number of pages17
JournalJournal of Rational - Emotive and Cognitive - Behavior Therapy
Volume32
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2014

Keywords

  • Adolescent
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Transdiagnostic
  • Treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Clinical Psychology

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