Wednesday, July 20, 2011

David Raffle completes dissertation in the School of Psychology

Sequential Analysis of Preadolescent and Parent Behaviors During Dental Procedures -- David Raffle is completing his postdoctoral hours as a Psychological Assistant, performing neuropsychological and psychoeducational assessment, as well as individual, group, and family therapy. He is also a Certified Brain Injury Specialist who works with patients with traumatic and acquired brain injury and their families. His website is and he can be reached at

To better understand preadolescent-parent interactions during stressful and potentially painful dental procedures, behaviors of 37 parent-preadolescent dyads were videotaped, coded, and analyzed using contingency tables to determine if preadolescent attachment or distress behaviors would be preceded or followed by particular parent behaviors significantly more or less often than expected by chance. Log-linear and residual analyses revealed that attachment behaviors in preadolescents showed no greater or lesser likelihood of occurring following parent behaviors. Parent distracting and informing occurred with greater likelihood following preadolescent attachment behaviors, while parent ignoring, exploring, and encouraging occurred with less likelihood following preadolescent attachment behaviors. Preadolescent distress behaviors were more likely to occur following parent encouraging and less likely to occur following parent informing. Parent encouraging and directing were more likely to occur, and parent distracting and informing less likely to occur, following preadolescent distress behaviors. A mediation model was proposed in which preadolescent attachment behaviors are followed by specific parent behaviors, each of which acts as a mediator that is followed by the reduced likelihood of preadolescent distress. A circular model was proposed in which an augmentation of preadolescent distress occurs both prior to and following parent encouraging and ignoring, while a reduction of preadolescent distress occurs both prior to and following parent distracting and informing.

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