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Effects of a training in mental imagery on worry: A proof-of-principle study

Skodzik, Timo; Leopold, Alexandra; Ehring, Thomas

Journal of anxiety disorders. Volume 45 (2017, January); pp 24-33 -- Elsevier Ltd

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  • Title:
    Effects of a training in mental imagery on worry: A proof-of-principle study
  • Author: Skodzik, Timo;
    Leopold, Alexandra;
    Ehring, Thomas
  • Found In: Journal of anxiety disorders. Volume 45 (2017, January); pp 24-33
  • Journal Title: Journal of anxiety disorders
  • Subjects: Angoisse--Périodiques; Anxiety Disorders--Periodicals; Anxiety--Periodicals; TMI  training in mental imagery--WL waiting list control group; Worry--Mental imagery--Cognitive training--Emotion--Generalized anxiety disorder; Electronic journals; Dewey: 616.8522
  • Rights: legaldeposit
  • Publication Details: Elsevier Ltd
  • Abstract: Highlights:

    In this proof-of-principle study, the efficacy of a training in mental imagery (TMI) to reduce worry was evaluated in a sample of high worriers.

    TMI led to significantly reduced pathological worry and associated outcomes.

    The effects were most pronounced in highly anxious and worry-prone subjects.

    Abstract:

    Worry is characterized by a predominance of verbal thinking and relatively little mental imagery. This cognitive bias of verbal and abstract processing has been found to impair emotional processing of worry topics so that worrisome thoughts are maintained. On the other hand, engaging in mental imagery during the worry process fosters emotional processing of worry themes. In the present study, we examined whether training high worriers ( n  = 71) to use more mental imagery in their everyday lives is an effective intervention to reduce pathological worry.

    Results indicated that our novel training in mental imagery (TMI) led to a significant reduction of worry and impairment, assessed both one and five weeks after the training. Furthermore, in highly anxious participants TMI had beneficial effects on controllability of worry, state anxiety, and positive mood.

    Theoretical and clinical implications of our findings and methodological limitations of this proof-of-principle study are discussed.


  • Identifier: System Number: LDEAvdc_100040028383.0x000001; Journal ISSN: 0887-6185; 10.1016/j.janxdis.2016.11.009
  • Publication Date: 2017
  • Physical Description: Electronic
  • Shelfmark(s): ELD Digital store

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