ISSN 2043-8087
Journal of Experimental Psychopathology
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The role of positive affect in enhancing extinction learning and exposure therapy for anxiety disorders

  Tomislav Zbozinek - University of California, Los Angeles
  Michelle Craske - University of California, Los Angeles

In Press (Uncorrected Proof), Pages 1-20

Although exposure is an effective treatment for anxiety disorders, its efficacy is limited, and efforts are being made to enhance its overall effectiveness. The present article discusses one potential method of optimizing extinction learning and exposure therapy: increasing positive affect. The effect of positive affect on learning is discussed in regards to various components of learning, including attention, encoding, rehearsal, consolidation, retrieval, and stimulus appraisal. These effects are then discussed specifically with extinction learning and exposure therapy. The authors conclude that increasing positive affect during exposures may enhance exposure therapy via various these learning mechanisms but that this awaits further testing.

Table of Contents

Correspondence to
Mr. Tomislav Zbozinek

positive affect; extinction; exposure therapy; learning; memory

Received 17 Nov 2015; Revised 6 Jul 2016; Accepted 6 Jul 2016; In Press 25 Sep 2016

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