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Depression Research and Treatment
Volume 2012, Article ID 925372, 8 pages
Research Article

Temperament, Character, and Adolescents' Depressive Symptoms: Focusing on Affect

1Institute of Neuroscience and Physiology, The Sahlgrenska Academy, University of Gothenburg, Wallinsgatan 8, 431 41 Gothenburg, Sweden
2Centre for Ethics, Law, and Mental Health (CELAM), University of Gothenburg, Wallinsgatan 8, 431 41 Gothenburg, Sweden
3R&D Unit, Swedish Prison and Probation Service, Wallinsgatan 8, 431 41 Gothenburg, Sweden
4Department of Psychology, University of Gothenburg, Box 500, 405 30 Gothenburg, Sweden

Received 10 April 2012; Accepted 22 May 2012

Academic Editor: C. Robert Cloninger

Copyright © 2012 Danilo Garcia et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Positive (PA) and negative affect (NA) are two separate systems markers of subjective well-being and measures of the state depression (low PA combined with high NA). The present study investigated differences in temperament, character, locus of control, and depressive symptoms (sleep quality, stress, and lack of energy) between affective profiles in an adolescent sample. Participants ( 𝑁 = 3 0 4 ) were categorized into four affective profiles: “self-fulfilling” (high PA, low NA), “high affective” (high PA, high NA), “low affective” (low PA, low NA), and “self-destructive” (low PA, high NA). Personality was measured by the Temperament and Character Inventory and affective profiles by the Positive Affect and Negative Affect Schedule. The “self-fulfilling” profile was characterized by, compared to the other affective profiles, higher levels of sleep quality, less stress and more energy and also higher levels of persistence and a mature character (i.e., high scores in self-directedness and cooperativeness). “Self-destructive” adolescents reported higher levels of external locus of control, high scores in harm avoidance and reward dependence combined with less mature character. The results identify the importance of character maturity in well-being and suggest that depressive state can be positively influenced by promoting positive emotions which appears to be achieved by character development.