Relationships between negative affectivity, emotion regulation, anxiety, and depressive symptoms in adolescents as examined through structural equation modeling.

Research paper by Miquel M Tortella-Feliu, Maria M Balle, Albert A Sesé

Indexed on: 18 May '10Published on: 18 May '10Published in: Journal of Anxiety Disorders


The relationship between negative affectivity (NA) and emotion regulation (ER) in determining anxiety and depressive symptomatology was examined in a large (n=1441) sample of adolescents (12-17 years old). Two models, diverging only as to inclusion or exclusion of a path from NA to negative ER, were analyzed through structural equation modeling; the goal was to explore the mediational or non-mediational role of ER in determining anxiety symptoms. The models yielded similar adequate fit to data, indicating that both NA and negative ER contribute to anxiety symptoms which, in turn, significantly determine depressive symptomatology. The mediational model better captures the relationships revealed in the data, with NA determining negative ER to a great extent. Additionally, most individuals scoring highly in NA also tend to score highly in negative ER, indicating that adolescents with heightened NA are prone to a dysfunctional style of ER.