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Emotion Processes Predicting Outbursts and Functional Impact in Misophonia

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Qiaochu Wang , Silia Vitoratou, Nora Uglik-Marucha, Jane Gregory

Original languageEnglish
Article number903142
JournalFrontiers in Psychology
Volume13
Early online date4 Jul 2022
DOIs
Accepted/In press14 Jun 2022
E-pub ahead of print4 Jul 2022
Published4 Jul 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information: SV was funded or partially funded by the Biomedical Research Centre for Mental Health at South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust and King’s College London. This research was funded in whole, or in part, by the Wellcome Trust (JG; grant number 102176/B/13/Z). Publisher Copyright: Copyright © 2022 Wang, Vitoratou, Uglik-Marucha and Gregory.

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King's Authors

Abstract

Misophonia involves a decreased tolerance to certain sounds and is associated with a range of emotions and emotion processes. In addition to the distress caused by misophonia, some individuals report having aggressive outbursts and significant impact on doing things they would like to be able to do. This study aimed to examine whether misophonia-specific cognitive and emotional processes were associated with misophonic outbursts and impact, and whether these relationships could be explained in part by emotion processes not specific to misophonia. A sample of 703 individuals, 315 of whom identified with having misophonia, completed measures of misophonia, depression and anxiety symptoms, anxiety and disgust sensitivity, interoception and beliefs about emotions. Exploratory correlation and regression analyses were used to build mediation models, which were tested using multiple linear regression. Externalising appraisals (blaming others for causing one’s reaction to sounds) were positively associated with misophonic outbursts, and this relationship was partially explained by anxiety symptoms and disgust sensitivity. Sense of emotional threat in misophonia predicted functional impact of misophonia, and this was partially explained by depression symptoms and negative beliefs about emotions. Anxiety sensitivity and interoception were not significant independent predictors of misophonic outbursts or functional impact. These results provide support for the relevance of emotion processes in misophonia and highlight the importance of using multi-dimensional measures of misophonia to improve our understanding of the condition.

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