ERIC Number: EJ914227
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2011-Jan
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 78
Attentional Biases for Emotional Faces in Young Children of Mothers with Chronic or Recurrent Depression
Kujawa, Autumn J.; Torpey, Dana; Kim, Jiyon; Hajcak, Greg; Rose, Suzanne; Gotlib, Ian H.; Klein, Daniel N.
Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology, v39 n1 p125-135 Jan 2011
Attentional biases for negative stimuli have been observed in school-age and adolescent children of depressed mothers and may reflect a vulnerability to depression. The direction of these biases and whether they can be identified in early childhood remains unclear. The current study examined attentional biases in 5-7-year-old children of depressed and non-depressed mothers. Following a mood induction, children participated in a dot-probe task assessing biases for sad and happy faces. There was a significant interaction of group and sex: daughters of depressed mothers attended selectively to sad faces, while children of controls and sons of depressed mothers did not exhibit biases. No effects were found for happy stimuli. These findings suggest that attentional biases are discernible in early childhood and may be vulnerability markers for depression. The results also raise the possibility that sex differences in cognitive biases are evident before the emergence of sex differences in the prevalence of depression.
Descriptors: Mothers, Young Children, Depression (Psychology), Parent Influence, Emotional Response, Mental Disorders, Attention, Visual Stimuli, Comparative Analysis, Bias, Gender Differences, At Risk Persons, Child Development, Child Psychology
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A