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Health Perception Is a Unique Predictor of Anxiety Symptoms in Non‐Clinical Participants

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This study evaluated the role of perceived health in predicting anxiety symptoms, bodily vigilance and agoraphobic cognitions among 71 individuals (30 females; mean age 19.9 years, SD?=?3.1) without a psychiatric history, including non-clinical panic attacks. Results indicated that, relative to anxiety sensitivity, perceived health was a distinct construct that incrementally predicted bodily-oriented catastrophic thinking (8% of unique variance) and heart-focused anxiety (13% of unique variance). Moreover, perceived health significantly incrementally predicted anxious arousal symptoms (9% of unique variance). Results are discussed in relation to the role of perceived health as a cognitive vulnerability factor for anxiety-related problems.

Keywords: agoraphobic cognitions; anxiety sensitivity; bodily vigilance; emotional vulnerability; panic disorder; perceived health

Document Type: Research Article

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/16506070510010611

Affiliations: Department of Psychology, University of Vermont, Bington, Vermont, USA

Publication date: June 1, 2005

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