Positive attributes in children and reduced risk of future psychopathology

Abstract

BACKGROUND There is little research on children's positive attributes and their association with psychiatric outcomes. AIMS To examine the hypothesis that children's positive attributes are associated with a reduced risk of developing psychopathology in future. METHOD Positive attributes, measured with the Youth Strengths Inventory (YSI) and psychiatric outcomes were assessed on two occasions over 3 years in a large epidemiological sample of British children and adolescents (n = 5325). RESULTS The YSI showed high to moderate cross-informant correlations and longitudinal stability. Children scoring high on positive attributes at baseline had fewer psychiatric symptoms and disorders at follow-up, adjusting for symptoms at baseline, disorder at baseline and child and family factors. Analyses with propensity score matching also suggested that positive attributes decrease the likelihood of psychiatric morbidity. CONCLUSIONS Children's positive attributes are associated with significantly less psychopathology across time and may be a target for intervention.

DOI: 10.1192/bjp.bp.114.144519

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Cite this paper

@inproceedings{VidalRibas2015PositiveAI, title={Positive attributes in children and reduced risk of future psychopathology}, author={Pablo Vidal-Ribas and Robert Goodman and Argyris Stringaris}, booktitle={The British journal of psychiatry : the journal of mental science}, year={2015} }