Self-disgust as a potential mechanism explaining the association between loneliness and depression

YPSILANTI, Antonia, LAZURAS, Lambros, POWELL, Phillip and OVERTON, Paul (2019). Self-disgust as a potential mechanism explaining the association between loneliness and depression. Journal of Affective Disorders, 243, 108-115.

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Link to published version:: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2018.09.056

Abstract

Background: Loneliness and self-disgust have been considered as independent predictors of depressive symptoms. In the present study, we hypothesized that self-disgust can explain the association between loneliness and depression, and that emotion regulation strategies interact with self-disgust in predicting depressive symptoms. Methods: Three hundred and seventeen participants (M = 29.29 years, SD = 14.11; 76.9% females) completed structured anonymous self-reported measures of loneliness, self-disgust, emotion regulation strategies, and depressive symptoms. Results: One-way MANOVA showed that participants in the high-loneliness group reported significantly higher behavioural and physical self-disgust, compared to those in the middle and low-loneliness groups. Bootstrapped hierarchical linear regression analysis showed that self-disgust significantly improved predicted variance in depressive symptoms, after controlling for the effects of loneliness. Regression-based mediation modelling showed that both physical and behavioural self-disgust significantly mediated the association between loneliness and depression. Finally, moderated regression analysis showed that expressive suppression interacted with self-disgust in predicting depressive symptoms. Limitations: A cross-sectional design was used, and our study focused on expressive suppression and cognitive reappraisal but not on other aspects of emotion regulation or the modulation of emotional arousal and responses. Conclusions: We demonstrated, for the first time, that self-disgust plays an important role in the association between loneliness and depressive symptoms. Furthermore, variations in emotion regulation strategies can explain the association between self-disgust and depressive symptoms.

Item Type: Article
Research Institute, Centre or Group - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Psychology Research Group
Departments - Does NOT include content added after October 2018: Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities > Department of Psychology, Sociology and Politics
Identification Number: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jad.2018.09.056
Depositing User: Antonia Ypsilanti
Date Deposited: 27 Sep 2018 13:12
Last Modified: 16 Nov 2018 12:49
URI: http://shura.shu.ac.uk/id/eprint/22555

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