Adaptive affect: The nature of anxiety and depression

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


An approach viewing anxiety and depression as extensions of normal adaptive biologic drives is discussed. Anxiety is viewed as the result of an underlying biological drive to preserve and maintain our wellbeing. At the extremes, if unresolved, this drive can be maladaptive, particularly if activated over prolonged periods of time. This paper proposes that depression is the result of a biological drive that mediates the effects of maladaptive levels of anxiety. These two processes are thought to be acting simultaneously. When operating in the normal range, these drives are helpful; in the extremes, they are associated with impairment. Over time, if unresolved, symptoms of anxiety will begin to become associated with increasing levels of depression.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3323-3326
Number of pages4
JournalNeuropsychiatric Disease and Treatment
StatePublished - 2019


  • Adaptive affect
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Stress

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Biological Psychiatry


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