Parent’ Involvement

Parent involvement in treatment can enhance treatment effects and help parents to change dysfunctional parent-child interactions when the children face social situations. Garcia-Lopez et al.’s (2014) study was a quantitative study that showed interventions, post-treatment, and follow-up for children’s SAD. The anxiety and expressed emotion in children and parents were measured through semi-structured audiotaped interviews, which increased the validity of the method. The participants of Garcia-Lopez et al.’s study were comprised of 52 adolescents with SAD aged 13-18, all with social phobia. Garcia-Lopez et al. chose two groups: one group with parents’ training and intervention for parents, and the other group without parents’ training and intervention for parents. Garcia-Lopez et al. used semi-structured interviews for the diagnostic measures before and after treatment. The study includes four stages: screening, pre-treatment, post-treatment, and a 12-month follow-up assessment in the school environment. Finally, Garcia-Lopez et al. compared two groups with each other. Data revealed that children with parents’ training reported greater improvement in SAD. Parents’ training not only resulted in reductions in Social Anxiety symptomatology but also resulted in a similar decrease in depression symptomatology.

When the main reason for social anxiety in children is their parents’ behavior, it is obvious that parents need supports and interventions to help their children with SAD. Garcia-Lopez et al. used post-treatment and 12-month follow-up, which could help them to draw more consistent conclusions according to follow-up results. One of the most important weaknesses in Garcia-Lopez et al.’s work was that only child measures were used to evaluate treatment outcomes and they did not measure parents’ EE levels again. As children with Social Anxiety present substantially increased risks of depression, suicide attempts, substance abuse, severe social restriction, and lower educational attainment, Garcia-Lopez et al. suggested that high EE-parents of children with Social Anxiety need to be involved in their child’s therapy.

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