The role of reassurance seeking in obsessive compulsive disorder: the associations between reassurance seeking, dysfunctional beliefs, negative emotions, and obsessive- compulsive symptoms

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Haciomeroglu B.

BMC PSYCHIATRY, vol.20, no.1, 2020 (SCI-Expanded) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 20 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2020
  • Doi Number: 10.1186/s12888-020-02766-y
  • Journal Name: BMC PSYCHIATRY
  • Journal Indexes: Science Citation Index Expanded (SCI-EXPANDED), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, EMBASE, MEDLINE, Psycinfo, Directory of Open Access Journals
  • Keywords: Reassurance seeking, Obsessive compulsive symptoms, Dysfunctional beliefs, Emotions, COGNITIVE THEORY, OCD, RESPONSIBILITY, EXPRESSION, INVENTORY, PATTERNS, DISGUST, GUILT, FEAR
  • Ankara Haci Bayram Veli University Affiliated: Yes


Background This study investigates the association of reassurance seeking with obsessive compulsive (OC) symptoms, dysfunctional beliefs, and negative emotions. Methods Reassurance Seeking Questionnaire, Obsessive-Compulsive Inventory, Obsessive Beliefs Questionnaire, Trait Anger Expression Inventory, and Guilt Inventory were applied to 53 obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) patients and 591 non-clinical participants. Results The results showed that the severity of the OC symptoms significantly predicted the carefulness of OCD patients during reassurance seeking, indicating increased carefulness during reassurance seeking as the severity of OC symptoms increased. Moreover, feelings of guilt increased with increasing intensity of reassurance seeking. In addition, carefulness during reassurance seeking significantly predicted the level of anxiety. Responsibility/threat estimation, perfectionism/need for certainty, and importance/control of thoughts significantly predicted the OC symptoms. Moreover, the dysfunctional beliefs directly associated with an increased need to seek reassurance from different sources and seek reassurance more carefully. In terms of mediational effect, the results revealed that the individuals who had distorted beliefs were more likely to have OC symptoms and, in turn, the OC symptoms increased carefulness during reassurance seeking. The analysis of the model test revealed mostly similar results to those obtained for the clinical sample. Conclusions The findings revealed a close relationship between OC symptoms and reassurance-seeking behaviors.