Compulsive checking behaviors in generalized anxiety disorder

Alexander J. Schut, Louis G. Castonguay, Thomas D. Borkovec

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

49 Scopus citations


Recent evidence suggests that a relationship exists between worry, the central feature of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), and compulsive behaviors, particularly compulsive checking. In this article we report the results from two studies. The first study assessed the frequency of obsessions and compulsions in 107 principally diagnosed GAD clients. The second study examined levels of alexithymia in analogue samples of GAD checkers (n = 31), GAD noncheckers (n = 30), and non-GAD nonchecking controls (n = 27) using the Toronto Alexithymia Scale-20 (Bagby, Parker, & Taylor, 1994). The results from these studies suggest that compulsive behaviors in the form of compulsive checking is more common in GAD than previously expected and that such behaviors in GAD may act as an additional mechanism by which affective experiences are avoided.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)705-715
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of clinical psychology
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2001

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology


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