Role of Self-Criticism, Anxiety, and Depressive Symptoms in Young Adults’ Insomnia

Mor Bar, Gili Schrieber, Noa Gueron-Sela, Golan Shahar, Liat Tikotzky

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Scopus citations


The interplay between personality and psychopathology in young adults’ insomnia is poorly understood. The authors examined the main-and-interactive role of self-criticism, anxiety, and depressive symptoms in young adults’ insomnia, as well as the potentially mediating role of sleep-related arousal and maladaptive cognitive styles. One hundred sixty-one undergraduate freshmen (Mage = 25.0 years) were assessed twice over 1.5 months, using measures of sleep quality, anxiety, depressive symptomatology, self-criticism, pre-sleep arousal, and mental control strategies. A structural equation modeling (SEM) analysis revealed that anxiety prospectively predicted insomnia, and this effect was mediated by sleep arousal and social avoidance. As well, self-criticism prospectively predicted insomnia under elevated levels of depressive symptoms. In young adults, insomnia treatment should include a routine assessment and intervention with anxiety, depression, and self-criticism.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)15-29
Number of pages15
JournalInternational Journal of Cognitive Therapy
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Mar 2020


  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Risk
  • Self-criticism
  • Sleep disturbances

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology


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