THE PSYCHOLOGICAL TREATMENTS FOR THE PHOBIA OF DARKNESS: A QUANTITATIVE REVIEW
AbstractA meta-analysis was performed on the effectiveness of psychological treatment for phobia of the darkness in childhood. Thirteen scientific reports were identified and led to 26 independent studies, 19 treatment groups and 7 control groups. Three hundred and twenty-two children between the ages of 4 and 10, and predominantly boys, took part. The psychological treatment for the phobia of darkness was highly effective (d+ = 2.05). The treatment packages reached the best results, and the most effective procedure was emotive performances (d+ = 2.38). Results were better when therapy was brief, intensive and individual, it included exposure in vivo, and parents were implicated in the treatment. Response to treatment was better in the oldest children and in boys. The clinical implication of these findings are discussed.
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