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Abstract

The current exploratory study examined the associations between auditory vocal hallucinations (AVH) and delusions and religiosity in young adolescents. 337 children from a population-based case-control study with and without AVH, were assessed after five years at age 12 and 13, on the presence and appraisal of AVH, delusions and religiosity. AVH status (persistent, remittent, incident or control) was examined in relationship to religiosity. Results demonstrated a non-linear association between AVH and religiosity. Moderately religious adolescents were more likely to report AVH than non-religious adolescents (O.R.=2.6). Prospectively, moderately religious adolescents were more likely to have recently developed AVH than non-religious adolescents (O.R.=3.6) and strongly religious adolescents (O.R=7.9). Of the adolescents reporting voices in this sample (163%), more than half reported positive voices. Religious beliefs were often described as supportive, useful or neutral (82%), regardless of the level of religiosity, for both adolescents with and without AVH. Co-occurrence of AVH and delusions, and severity of AVH were not related to religiosity. The present findings suggest there may be a non-linear association between religiosity and hearing voices in young adolescents. A speculative explanation may be that religious practices were adopted in response to AVH as a method of coping. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)158-164
Number of pages7
JournalPsychiatry Research
Volume236
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 28-Feb-2016

Keywords

  • Religiosity
  • Delusions
  • Auditory vocal hallucinations
  • Adolescents
  • PSYCHOTIC SYMPTOMS
  • SPIRITUALITY
  • RISK
  • CHILDHOOD
  • CHILDREN
  • PREVALENCE
  • DISORDER
  • SCHIZOPHRENIA
  • RELIGIOUSNESS
  • SUICIDALITY

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