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How can adolescent shyness be helped?

A study published in Psychotherapy and (P&P) has examined the value of different in adolescents with problems communicating and social anxiety.

Very few studies have investigated the effects of individual disorder-specific treatment of () in adolescents. The objective of this study was to compare the effects of individual for SP, group (CBTG) and attentional placebo (AP) among adolescents with a primary diagnosis of SP. A randomized controlled design was used, and a total of 279 adolescents were assessed. Fifty-seven adolescents, between 13 and 16 years old, were allocated to individual , CBTG or AP.

The participants were assessed before treatment, at the end of treatment and at a 12-month follow-up using both self-report and a semi-structured interview. The individual cognitive therapy showed significant reductions in symptoms, impairment and diagnostic criteria both at the end of treatment and at the 12-month follow-up.

Compared with CBTG and AP, the individual cognitive therapy group demonstrated significantly greater effects on both symptom reduction and impairment. There were no significant differences between CBTG and AP. In a direct comparison between the most commonly used treatments for adolescent SP, results showed that individual therapy was the most effective, yielding better effects than both CBTG and AP.


A Randomized Controlled Trial of Individual Cognitive Therapy, Group Cognitive Behaviour Therapy and Attentional Placebo for Adolescent Social Phobia, Authors: Ingul J.M. Aune T. Nordahl H.M., Psychother Psychosom (2014) DOI:10.1159/000354672

Journal of Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics