Recent studies of social anxiety disorder (SAD) suggest that cost bias in social situations is an important factor that serves to maintain SAD symptoms, while other studies have reported that depression is strongly related to SAD symptoms. We investigated the possible effects of cost bias on SAD and symptoms of depressive symptoms, and developed a model of the effect of cost bias on social anxiety and depression. In the model, it was assumed that cost bias predicted fear while avoidance mediated the relationship between cost bias and fear in social situations. A path analysis demonstrated that this model provided a good fit to the data. In addition, all path coefficients had a significant effect on each variable. Furthermore, high levels of cost bias were associated with depressive symptoms. These findings support the contention that cost bias is a maintaining factor in SAD symptoms.
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