Differentiating Kinds of Systemic Stressors With Relation to Psychotic-Like Experiences in Late Childhood and Early Adolescence: The Stimulation, Discrepancy, and Deprivation Model of Psychosis
Conceptualizations that distinguish systems-level stress exposures are lacking; the stimulation (lack of safety and high attentional demands), discrepancy (social exclusion and lack of belonging), and deprivation (SDD; lack of environmental enrichment) theory of psychosis and stressors occurring at the systems level has not been directly tested. Exploratory factor analysis was conducted on 3,207 youths, and associations with psychotic-like experiences (PLEs) were explored. Although model fit was suboptimal, five factors were defined, and four were consistent with the SDD theory and related to PLEs. Objective and subjective or self-report exposures for deprivation showed significantly stronger PLE associations compared with discrepancy and objective stimulation factors. Objective and subjective or self-report measures converged overall, although self-report stimulation exhibited a significantly stronger association with PLEs compared with objective stimulation. Considering distinct systems-level exposures could help clarify putative mechanisms and psychosis vulnerability. The preliminary approach potentially informs health policy efforts aimed at psychopathology prevention and intervention.