Call for papers for Special Section: Advances in the Clinical Conceptualization and Treatment of Pediatric Irritability
According to the Merriam-Webster dictionary, irritability is defined as “quick excitability to annoyance, impatience or anger.” While irritability is not itself pathological, when children present with irritability that is chronic, persistent, and impairing, it becomes a symptom of clinical concern. As such, it is one of the most common reasons for referral for evaluation and treatment (Costello et al, 2014). The challenge facing researchers and clinicians is how this symptom is best conceptualized and subsequently treated: Is it a disruption of mood or emotion regulation? Is it a behavioral concern? Is it a response to environmental influences? Further, irritability is a trandiagnostic concept, appearing in the diagnostic criteria for several disorders including GAD, ODD, and MDD in children, and presenting as a related symptom in other conditions such as ADHD and autism. Significant recent advances are, in part, due to the increased focus on examining transdiagnostic dimensions, as reflected in the NIMH’s Research Domain Criteria (RDoC). Specifically, constructs in the Negative Valence system such as threat and frustrative non-reward have directly informed research and subsequent theoretical models of irritability. Such models have further informed novel interventions aimed at reducing irritability by targeting core cognitive processing and emotion regulation deficits. Accordingly, this special issue of Behavior Therapy will provide the latest research on pediatric irritability from multiple perspectives. This includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Advances in clinical assessment
- Novel behavioral and cognitive interventions
- Irritability-related outcomes of established interventions
- Investigations of neurobiological or physiological mechanisms
- Studies of pediatric irritability within and across specific disorders.