Prevention of anxiety disorders

Is it possible to prevent the outbreak of an anxiety disorder in patients at increased risk? Which are the risk factors? Which degree of information and which therapeutic measures are effective? - The CAC tries to find answers to these questions in clinical studies, conducts awareness campaigns, and offers prevention programs.

Prevention strategies

It is best if a disease does not get to break out in the first place. Therefore, an important focus of our work is to educate about and prevent anxiety disorders. Numerous studies in the past have determined that certain circumstances, risk factors, or personality structures contribute to the development of an anxiety disorder, but they have also shown that both a targeted provision of information and an intervention as early as possible can help prevent the onset of the disease. For this reason, the CAC develops prevention programs within the framework of clinical studies and is involved in public awareness work.

Who is at increased risk?

Anxiety disorders or their precursors can already develop in childhood and adolescence. In addition to genetic factors, drastic stress situations in the family frequently factor in the development of an anxiety disorder, such as parental separation, the mental illness of a family member, abuse, or the death of a close relative. Sometimes, an overprotective parenting style also promotes an anxious personality structure. In adults, perfectionists with a great need for control are often found among those affected, but also drug users and traumatized persons with anxiety as an expression of post-traumatic stress disorder.

We offer a wide range of information and support

Through brochures and lectures, we do public relations work and educate about anxiety disorders. Our lecture series "Prevention and Treatment of Frequent Mental Disorders" has been established for years. It is aimed at all interested parties and always includes the topic of anxiety disorders.

We try to prevent anxiety disorders with several support programs in specific situations. For example, in cooperation with the Würzburg Diakonie (social welfare office), we offer a family consultation for families with a mentally ill family member, and specifically address children and young people in the project "Good times - bad times".

For students, in a pilot project, we developed the "Efficient Exam Preparation" program to prevent exam anxiety.


The initials stand for “Prävention von Angst durch Angstsensitivitätstraining” ("prevention of anxiety through anxiety sensitivity training"). In the study funded by the DFG within the framework of the Collaborative Research Center TRR 58 "Fear, Anxiety and Anxiety Disorders", we try to identify risk factors for the development of anxiety disorders and to investigate the effectiveness of a prevention program in healthy people between 18 and 30 years of age. The program, which lasts about five weeks, consists of a training session on how to deal with physical sensations of anxiety and stress. The goal is to reduce the so-called anxiety sensitivity. This refers to the degree to which we listen to our inner voice and interpret the signals of our body as dangerous. You can find more information in the study leaflet.

German Center for Prevention Research on Mental Health

In December 2019, the German Center for Prevention Research on Mental Health was founded here in Würzburg - largely due to the grown and cross-linked infrastructure for the treatment and research of mental disorders. In cooperation with the CAC, the center pursues the goal of developing prevention programs to reduce mental disorders - including anxiety disorders -, evaluating their effectiveness, and making them available to the general public.


Portraitfoto von Univ. Prof. Dr. med. Marcel Romanos

Univ.-Prof. Dr. med.
Marcel Romanos

Klinikdirektor Kinder- und Jugendpsychiatrie

+49 931 201-78000

Portraitfoto von Prof. Dr. Paul Pauli

Prof. Dr. phil.
Paul Pauli

Lehrstuhlinhaber – Lehrstuhl für Psychologie I – Biologische Psychologie, Klinische Psychologie und Psychotherapie

+49 931 31-82842

Kontakt, Sprechzeiten


Anmeldung zur ambulanten Behandlung in der Klinik und Poliklinik für Psychiatrie für Psychiatrie, Psychosomatik und Psychotherapie (PPP)
+49 931 201-77800

Anmeldung in der Hochschulambulanz
+ 49 931 3182839

Anmeldung zur ambulanten Behandlung im Klinik und Poliklinik für Kinder- und Jugendpsychiatrie, Psychosomatik und Psychotherapie (KJPPP)
+49 931 201-79600

E-Mail und Fax

Sekretariat PPP

+49 931 201-77020

Sekretariat Hochschulambulanz

+4931 31-828390

Sekretariat KJPPP

+49 931 201-78620



Interdisziplinäres Zentrum für Angsterkrankungen | Universitätsklinikum Würzburg | Magarete-Höppel-Platz 1 |  97078 Würzburg | Deutschland