Reduction of Anxiety VulnerabilityAffecting 40 million adults in the United States age 18 and older which is over U.S. (Anxiety Disorder Association of America, 2009). Anxiety disorders are characterized in six illnesses: generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, posttraumatic stress disorder, phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder and social anxiety disorder. As noted by the ADAA (2009), the first four listed are twice as likely to affect women verses men. Obsessive-compulsive and social anxiety disorders are equally common among both sexes. Out of all, phobias take the biggest toll on Americans affecting 19 million individuals. According to the associations research statistics about anxiety, anxiety disorders cost the U.S. more than $42 billion a year, almost one-third of the country's $148 billion total mental health bill. Those who have anxiety are six times more likely to be hospitalized for psychiatric disorders than those who do not suffer from anxiety disorders. People with anxiety disorders often suffer from other mental health disorders such as depression, bipolar disorder, alcohol use, eating disorders and sleep disorders.
Theoretical Rationale and/or Background of the StudyAs Bridle ( ) explained, across recent years, evidence has accumulated that the disposition to selectively allocate attention toward emotionally negative stimuli is associated with heightened anxiety vulnerability. Individuals low in anxiety vulnerability more commonly direct attention away from such negative information. These anxiety-related differences in attentional bias have often been demonstrated with the attentional probe task developed by MacLeod, Mathews, and Tata (1986).
Question Asked by the Investigators/HypothesisInvestigators was curious as to whether the modification of attentional bias can serve to attenuate state anxiety reactions to the types of stressful life events encountered in naturalistic settings or can impact conventional measures of trait anxiety. ( Bridle, , para 3). Therefore, they carried out their home-based cognitive bias modification study hypothesizing that biased attentional responding to emotionally negative information causally contributes to real-world anxiety vulnerability.
Experimental DesignIn order to complete this extensive research, 18 participants received an internet attentional probe training procedure to be completed at home. To prove the fact that negative information and anxiety can have negative effect on humans the task was performed over an 18 day span with the 18th day being the transition to Australia. On day on they completed a series of tests that measured anxiety. The second day they started the task for the first time. Participants had to set their screen to a resolution of 800x600 pixels and were instructed to sit 60 cm from the screen. Before starting the task they had to make sure they werent to be interrupted and had to complete the task in one sitting. This type of procedure...