Why Participate in Pediatric Anxiety Research?

Child OCD & Anxiety Disorders Program (COAP)

Why Participate in Pediatric Anxiety Research?

What can we learn from childhood anxiety research?

Thanks to the participation of young people and their families in recent research, we have better treatments available for childhood anxiety than ever before! Although research has already shown that cognitive behavior therapy and/or medication work well for many youth, further study is needed to:

  1. Understand what treatments will work best for each individual
  2. Develop additional treatment options for youth who do not respond to current treatments
  3. Understand the factors that place person at greater risk for developing an anxiety disorder
  4. Improve diagnostic speed and accuracy

Research allows us to better understand the driving forces behind childhood anxiety and how to most effectively treat it.  You can help us do this!

Why is it important to explore anxiety in young people?

It is important to study anxiety in all ages, and that includes our youth!  Due to differences in neurological and social development, the treatments that work well for adults may not always work as well with teens or children.  Research can help us pinpoint the differences between anxious youth and anxious adults, allowing us to tailor treatments more effectively to these differing developmental stages.

Childhood anxiety research also allows us to examine strategies for "early intervention."  Individuals displaying anxiety symptoms at a young age may be at increased risk for carrying these symptoms into adulthood. Fortunately, we have a golden opportunity to act while these young brains are still in development!  With the help of research, we can learn to both identify and treat anxiety sooner.

Does childhood anxiety research include teens?

fMRI Scanner
This is one of our fMRI scanning sites. It is decorated with colorful sea-life to help comfort young people who may have never had an fMRI.

Yes! Many research studies are designed for children, teens, or both! Michigan Medicine is committed to supporting youth-based research, and we work hard to ensure that all study processes are age-appropriate.

Of course, all youth are different, so each study that you consider will be sure to describe the ins-and-outs of that specific experience.  You can then decide whether or not it sounds like a good fit for you and your family.  Click here to see some of the studies currently active in our department!

Will my child or I receive anything for our time?

To help thank you for the time you spend with us, some studies may offer child-friendly prizes, gift cards, or financial incentives.  Others may offer an established treatment, an experimental treatment, diagnostic information, referral resources, or other details about your child and their anxiety.  All studies are different, so the best way to find out more is by browsing for yourself!