Associations of early childhood adversities with mental disorders, psychological functioning, and suitability for psychotherapy in adulthood

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Heinonen , E , Knekt , P , Härkänen , T , Virtala , E & Lindfors , O 2018 , ' Associations of early childhood adversities with mental disorders, psychological functioning, and suitability for psychotherapy in adulthood ' , Psychiatry Research , vol. 264 , pp. 366-373 . https://doi.org/10.1016/j.psychres.2018.04.011

Title: Associations of early childhood adversities with mental disorders, psychological functioning, and suitability for psychotherapy in adulthood
Author: Heinonen, Erkki; Knekt, Paul; Härkänen, Tommi; Virtala, Esa; Lindfors, Olavi
Contributor: University of Helsinki, University of Helsinki
Date: 2018-06
Language: eng
Number of pages: 8
Belongs to series: Psychiatry Research
ISSN: 0165-1781
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/10138/303667
Abstract: Childhood adversities frequently precede adulthood depression and anxiety. Yet, how they impact needed treatment duration, type or focus in these common disorders, is unclear. For developing more individualized and precise interventions, we investigated whether specific early adversities associate with patients' distinct psychiatric problems, psychological vulnerabilities, and suitability for psychotherapy. A total of 221 depressed and anxious adult outpatients (excluding psychotic, severe personality, bipolar, and substance abuse disorders) referred from community, student, occupational, and private healthcare services filled the Childhood Family Atmosphere Questionnaire (CFAQ). They also filled self-reports on interpersonal behavior and problems, perceived competence, dispositional optimism, sense of coherence, defenses, and psychiatric history. Clinicians assessed the patients' symptomatology, personality, object relations, cognitive performance, and psychotherapy suitability. Regression analyses were conducted. Childhood adversities predicted both worse current psychological functioning (e.g., interpersonal problems), and better clinician-rated capacities for benefiting from psychotherapy (e.g. self-reflection, capacity for interaction). Parental problems had the most numerous negative associations to psychological functioning. Best capacities for psychotherapy were predicted by recollected family unhappiness. Associations with psychiatric criteria were, however, largely non-significant. In conclusion, for psychosocial treatment planning, patients' early adversities may indicate both vulnerability and resources. As childhood adversities are frequent among treatment-seekers, further studies examining how early adversities predict psychotherapy outcome are needed.
Subject: Depression
Anxiety
Childhood adversities
Psychotherapy
Personality
Psychosocial function
LONG-TERM PSYCHOTHERAPY
PSYCHODYNAMIC PSYCHOTHERAPY
ANXIETY DISORDER
PERSONALITY ORGANIZATION
EMOTIONAL MALTREATMENT
OBJECT RELATIONS
DEFENSE STYLE
FOLLOW-UP
PREDICTORS
SCALE
515 Psychology
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