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Prevention of Depressive Symptoms in Schoolchildren: Two-Year Follow-Up

Jane E. Gillham, Karen J. Reivich, Lisa H. Jaycox and Martin E. P. Seligman
Psychological Science
Vol. 6, No. 6 (Nov., 1995), pp. 343-351
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40062887
Page Count: 9
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Since scans are not currently available to screen readers, please contact JSTOR User Support for access. We'll provide a PDF copy for your screen reader.
Prevention of Depressive Symptoms in Schoolchildren: Two-Year Follow-Up
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Abstract

After teaching cognitive and social-problem-solving techniques designed to prevent depressive symptoms, we followed 69 fifth- and sixth-grade children at risk for depression for 2 years. We compared these children with 49 children in a matched no-treatment control group. The prevention group reported fewer depressive symptoms through the 2-year follow-up, and moderate to severe symptoms were reduced by half. Surprisingly, the effects of the prevention program grew larger after the program was over. We suggest that psychological immunization against depression can occur by teaching cognitive and social skills to children as they enter puberty.

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