Department of Economics and Business Economics

Psychotic experiences from preadolescence to adolescence: when should we be worried about adolescent risk behaviors?

Research output: Contribution to journal/Conference contribution in journal/Contribution to newspaperJournal articleResearchpeer-review

  • Martin K Rimvall, University of Copenhagen
  • ,
  • Jim van Os, Department of Psychosis Studies, King's College London, King's Health Partners, Institute of Psychiatry, London, UK., University Medical Centre Utrecht, Maastricht University Medical Centre
  • ,
  • Charlotte Ulrikka Rask
  • Else Marie Olsen, Center for Clinical Research and Prevention, Bispebjerg and Frederiksberg Hospital, Copenhagen, Denmark; Research Centre for Prevention and Health, The Capital Region of Denmark, Glostrup, Denmark; Mental Health Centre Copenhagen, The Capital Region of Denmark, Hellerup, Denmark.
  • ,
  • Anne Mette Skovgaard, 2 National Institute of Public Health, University of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark.
  • ,
  • Lars Clemmensen, Center for Telepsychiatry, Mental Health Services, Region of Southern Denmark, Odense, Denmark.
  • ,
  • Janne Tidselbak Larsen
  • Frank Verhulst, Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry/Psychology, Erasmus MC, University Medical Center, Rotterdam, The Netherlands., University of Copenhagen
  • ,
  • Pia Jeppesen, d Department of Clinical Medicine , Faculty of Health and Medical Sciences, University of Copenhagen , Copenhagen , Denmark.

Psychotic experiences (PE), below the threshold of psychotic disorder, are common in the general population. PE are associated with risk behaviors such as suicidality, non-suicidal self-injury (NSSI) and substance use. However, PE as specific or causal phenomena of these risk behaviors are still debated. We aimed to examine the longitudinal trajectories of PE from preadolescence to adolescence and their associated risk behaviors in adolescence. A total of 1138 adolescents from the Copenhagen Child Cohort 2000 were assessed for PE and risk behaviors (NSSI, suicide ideation and -attempts and substance use) at age 11 and 16 years, along with measures of general psychopathology and depressive symptoms specifically. Self-reported impact of general psychopathology tended to be associated with more PE persistence. PE were associated with all risk behaviors in cross section at both follow-ups. Persistent PE from ages 11 to 16 and incident PE at age 16 were associated with risk behaviors at age 16, whereas remitting PE from age 11 to 16 were not. After adjustment for co-occurring depressive symptoms and general psychopathology, all associations were markedly reduced. After exclusion of preadolescents who already had expressed risk behavior at age 11, PE in preadolescence did not stand out as an independent predictor of incident adolescent risk behaviors. The current study suggests that PE in preadolescence and adolescence may not play a direct causal role regarding NSSI, suicidality, and substance use. However, PE are still useful clinical markers of severity of psychopathology and associated risk behaviors.

Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Child & Adolescent Psychiatry
Pages (from-to)1251-1264
Number of pages14
Publication statusPublished - 2020

    Research areas

  • Epidemiology, Longitudinal, Non-suicidal self-harm, Psychotic experiences, Risk behaviors, Substance use, Suicidality

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