Managing Unwanted Intrusive Thoughts In Obsessive Compulsive Disorder: Relative Effectiveness Of Suppression, Focused-Distraction, and Acceptance
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CitationNajmi, Sadia, Bradley C. Riemann, and Daniel M. Wegner. 2009 Managing unwanted intrusive thoughts in obsessive compulsive disorder: relative effectiveness of suppression, distraction, and acceptance. Behaviour Research and Therapy 47(6): 494-503.
AbstractSuppression is one of various mental control techniques that people may use to manage unwanted thoughts. Evidence suggests that it is at best unsustainable and at worst counterproductive. This leads to the question: If suppression is a futile way to respond to unwanted, intrusive, thoughts, what is a more effective alternative? In the current study, we evaluated the relative effectiveness of suppression and two alternative mental control techniques—focused distraction and acceptance—on the frequency of intrusions and distress associated with them. Results support the claim that suppression is a counterproductive technique for dealing with unwanted, intrusive thoughts in OCD. However, the harmfulness of suppression was reflected primarily in the magnitude of distress and not in intrusion frequency. Focused distraction and acceptance were the more effective techniques for managing clinically significant intrusive thoughts. We discuss implications for the cognitive treatment for OCD.
Citable link to this pagehttp://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:9275580
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