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Neurodevelopmental Disorders and Treatment

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Combined cognitive modification and cognitive behaviour therapy on social anxiety

Author(s): Frank Holland, Patrick Stanely

The goal of this study is to see if combining Cognitive Bias Modification For Interpretative Biases (CBM-I) with Computerised Cognitive Behaviour Therapy (C-CBT) can improve interpretation biases and reduce social anxiety. Forty students with social anxiety were randomly allocated to one of two groups: intervention (positive CBM-I + C-CBT) or active control (neutral CBM-I + C-CBT). Pre-test assessments of social anxiety, interpretive bias, cognitive distortions, and social and job adjustment were completed by participants. They were given six 30-minute web-based therapies, one each day, including three sessions of either positive or neutral CBM-I and three sessions of C-CBT. Participants completed the baseline measurements at the post-test and two-week follow-up. A positive CBM-I + C-CBT combination elicited fewer negative interpretations of ambiguous situations than a neutral CBM-I + C-CBT combination. Both positive CBM-I + C-CBT and neutral CBM-I + C-CBT reduced social anxiety and cognitive distortions, as well as enhancing work and social adjustment, according to the findings. The positive CBM-I + C-CBT condition, on the other hand, had larger effect sizes than the control. When compared to the neutral CBM-I + C-CBT condition, adding positive CBM-I to C-CBT improved the training effects on social anxiety, cognitive distortions, and social and job adjustment.

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