Temper Outbursts and Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
Obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) is a distressing, chronic disorder characterized by repeated thoughts, compulsions, and intrusive imagery. It can interfere with normal day-to-day functioning.
The primary goal of treatment is to help patients stop worrying about obsessive thought patterns and develop relaxation techniques. Cognitive behavioral therapy is a proven effective approach for treating OCD and other anxiety disorders.
This study evaluated whether there was a relationship between temper outbursts and anxiety in youth with OCD. The researchers found that temper outbursts were more common in youth with OCD than in healthy controls. They were also associated with depressed mood. Compared to other disruptive behaviours, temper outbursts were more likely to be associated with OCD.
The study used a large clinical sample of children with OCD. Temper outbursts occurred at a similar frequency to depressive symptoms. Linear regression models were used to assess the effect of temper outbursts on symptom change.
Temper outbursts are more common in youth with OCD than in other disruptive behaviours. They are associated with depressed mood, and improve with treatment. Future studies should investigate the mechanism by which they occur.
In addition to temper outbursts, other disruptive behaviours included feelings of anger and premeditated aggressive acts. These behaviours are more prevalent in adolescents with OCD than in other anxiety disorders.
Overall, findings demonstrated reasonable discriminant validity for the individual domains, but significant explanatory power was provided by the cognitive measures. Among the cognitive domains, uncertainty was the only domain that predicted the severity of OCD symptoms more accurately than other belief domains.