Emotion dynamics concurrently and prospectively predict mood psychopathology

UNCG Author/Contributor (non-UNCG co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Thomas R. Kwapil, Associate Professor (Creator)
The University of North Carolina at Greensboro (UNCG )
Web Site: http://library.uncg.edu/

Abstract: Introduction: Altered emotion dynamics may represent a transdiagnostic risk factor for mood psychopathology. The present study examined whether altered emotion dynamics were associated with bipolar and depressive psychopathology concurrently and at a three-year follow-up. Methods: At baseline (n?=?138), participants completed diagnostic interviews, questionnaires, and seven days of experience sampling assessments. Four emotion dynamics were computed for negative affect (NA) and positive affect (PA) – within-person variance (variability), mean square of successive differences and probability of acute change (instability), and autocorrelation (inertia). At the three-year follow-up, participants (n?=?108) were re-assessed via interviews and questionnaires. Results: NA variability was associated with bipolar spectrum disorders at baseline and follow-up. NA instability predicted depressive symptoms and hypomanic personality at baseline, and bipolar spectrum disorders at the follow-up. NA inertia did not predict diagnoses or symptoms at either assessment. PA inertia predicted hyperthymic temperament at baseline but not follow-up. Notably, NA variability and instability predicted the development of new bipolar spectrum disorders at the follow-up. Limitations: Consistent with the recruitment strategy and young age of the participants, only 50% had developed diagnosable psychopathology by the time of the follow-up assessment. Conclusions: The present study provided a unique demonstration that altered emotion dynamics differentially predicted bipolar and depressive psychopathology concurrently and prospectively. Emotion dynamics are important to both digital phenotyping and mobile-based interventions as emotional instability offers a measurable risk factor that is identifiable prior to illness onset.

Additional Information

Journal of Affective Disorders, 261, 67-75
Language: English
Date: 2020
Emotion dynamics, Instability, Bipolar, Depression, Experience sampling methodology, Time series analysis

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