Using Cognitive Bias Modification to Deflate Responsibility in Compulsive Checkers
- 427 Downloads
Cognitive-behavioural models of compulsive checking posit a dominant role for beliefs regarding one’s responsibility to prevent harm. In the current study we employed a computerised cognitive bias modification of interpretation (CBM-I) paradigm to target and modify responsibility biases in a sample of undergraduate students with high levels of checking symptoms (N = 100). Participants were randomly assigned to either a positive (decrease responsibility bias) or negative (increase responsibility bias) CBM-I training condition. Relative to participants in the negative training condition, participants in the positive training condition demonstrated reduced responsibility bias in a subsequent interpretive bias test. Positive training also resulted in more adaptive physiological responding during a responsibility stressor task. There were no differential effects of CBM-I training, however, on observed or self-reported checking or self-reported responsibility beliefs. In light of these mixed findings, we outline future avenues for improving the efficacy of CBM-I training targeting responsibility biases.
KeywordsObsessive–compulsive disorder Cognitive bias modification Responsibility Checking
Conflict of Interest
Jessica R. Grisham, Lauren Becker, Alishia D. Williams, Alexis E. Whitton and Steve R. Makkar declare that they have no conflict of interest. The first author was supported in part by a Discovery Project grant from the Australian Research Council (DP0984560). The third author was supported by a National Health and Medical Research Council of Australia Fellowship (630746).
Informed consent was obtained prior to participation and approval was given by the UNSW Human Research Ethics Advisory Panel.
No animal studies were carried out by the authors for this article.
- Bowler, J. O., Mackintosh, B., Dunn, B. D., Mathews, A., Dalgleish, T., & Hoppitt, L. (2012). A comparison of cognitive bias modification for interpretation and computerized cognitive behavior therapy: Effects on anxiety, depression, attentional control, and interpretive bias. Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology, 80, 1021–1033.PubMedCrossRefPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Brosan, L., Hoppitt, L., Shelfer, L., Sillence, A., & Mackintosh, B. (2011). Cognitive bias modification for attention and interpretation reduces trait and state anxiety in anxious patients referred to an out-patient service: Results from a pilot study. Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry, 42, 258–264.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Fullana, M. A., Mataix-Cols, D., Caspi, A., Harrington, H., Grisham, J. R., Moffitt, T. E., et al. (2009). Obsessions and compulsions in the community: Prevalence, interference, help-seeking, developmental stability, and co-occurring psychiatric conditions. American Journal of Psychiatry, 166, 329–336.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Lang, P. J., Bradley, M. M., & Cuthbert, B. N. (2008). International affective picture system (IAPS): Affective ratings of pictures and instruction manual. Technical report A-8. University of Florida, Gainesville, FL.Google Scholar
- MacDonald, E. M., Koerner, N. & Antony, M. M. (2013). Modification of interpretive bias: Impact on anxiety sensitivity, information processing and response to induced bodily sensations. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 37, 860–871.Google Scholar
- Mendes, W. M. (2009). Assessing autonomic nervous system activity. In E. Harmon-Jones & J. Beer (Eds.), Methods in social neuroscience (pp. 118–147). New York, NY: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
- Salkovskis, P. M. (1996). Cognitive-behavioral approaches to the understanding of obsessional problems. In R. M. Rapee (Ed.), Current controversies in the anxiety disorders (pp. 33–50). New York: Guilford Press.Google Scholar
- Samuels, J. F., Riddle, M. A., Greenberg, B. D., Fyer, A. J., McCracken, J. T., Rauch, S. L., et al. (2006). The OCD collaborative genetics study: Methods and sample description. American Journal of Medical Genetics Part B: Neuropsychiatric Genetics, 141B, 201–207.CrossRefPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
- Sookman, D., & Steketee, G. (2009). Specialised cognitive behaviour therapy for treatment resistant obsessive compulsive disorder. In D. Sookman & R. L. Leahy (Eds.), Treatment resistant anxiety disorders: Resolving impasses to symptom remission (pp. 31–74). New York, NY: Routledge.Google Scholar
- Tabachnick, B. G., & Fidell, L. S. (2007). Using multivariate statistics (5th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson Education.Google Scholar
- Whitton, A. E., Grisham, J. R., Henry, J. D., & Palada, H. D. (2013). Interpretive bias modification for disgust. Journal of Experimental Psychopathology, 4, 341–359.Google Scholar