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Keywords:

  • anxiety;
  • attachment;
  • Dunn's model;
  • sensory processing patterns;
  • sensory responsiveness profiles

Abstract

Individual variations in the way people respond to sensory stimuli can sometimes lead to maladaptive representations of the world. Indeed, sensory responsiveness profiles were found to be associated with mood symptoms such as depression and anxiety. The goal of the current study was to investigate whether attachment orientations can account for the relationship between sensory responsiveness profiles and anxiety symptoms. Participants (N = 194) completed a battery of questionnaires assessing sensory responsiveness profiles, attachment orientations, and anxiety symptoms. As expected, various associations between sensory responsiveness profiles and anxiety symptoms were accounted for by attachment anxiety and avoidance. We suggest a possible causal path, in which early-developing sensory responsiveness profiles lead to attachment insecurities, which in turn may lead to mood symptoms such as anxiety.