The role of parental anxiety sensitivity in parent reports of child anxiety in treatment seeking families Article (Web of Science)


  • Recent research has examined the contribution of parental anxiety sensitivity to child anxiety, suggesting only a modest relationship between these two variables. No study to date, however, has examined the role of parental anxiety sensitivity in parent reports of the child’s anxiety. It was hypothesized that anxiety sensitivity, a cognitive risk factor for the development of anxiety, would be significantly correlated with parents’ reports of their child’s anxiety, specifically with respect to panic and separation anxiety. The present study employed a sample of 56 treatment-seeking children and their parents. Parent and child reports of the child’s anxiety were obtained, and self-reports of anxiety sensitivity were obtained from parent and child. Parent reports of their child’s panic and separation anxiety symptoms were significantly related to not only parental anxiety sensitivity ( r = .39 and r = .29, respectively) but also the child’s self-reported level of anxiety sensitivity ( r = .35 and r = .37, respectively). These findings suggest that anxiety sensitivity, a significant predictor of panic symptomatology amongst both adults and children, might be related to parents’ perceptions of their child’s symptoms of panic and separation anxiety. These findings further suggest taking into consideration parental levels of anxiety sensitivity when interpreting parent reports of child anxiety in clinical settings.

publication date

  • 2014

number of pages

  • 13

start page

  • 111

end page

  • 124


  • 19


  • 1