Aggression in Iranian adolescent girls: role of depressive mood, dysphoric disorder and premenstrual syndrome

Date03 October 2019
Publication Date03 October 2019
AuthorSajjad Rezaei
SubjectHealth & social care
Aggression in Iranian adolescent girls:
role of depressive mood, dysphoric
disorder and premenstrual syndrome
Sajjad Rezaei
Purpose Aggression is a destructive experience in terms of social and public health. The purpose of this
paper is to determine the role of depressive mood, premenstrual dysphoric disorder (PMDD) and
premenstrual syndrome (PMS) in adolescent girlsaggression.
Design/methodology/approach In a cross-sectionalstudy, 510 girl students were selected by multistage
cluster sampling from Lahijan and Sangar high schools (Northern Iran) in the 20172018 academic year, and
each of them responded to the short version of Beck Depression Inventory (BDI-13), Premenstrual
Symptoms Screening Tool and Ahvaz Aggression Inventory. Data were analyzed by point-biserial and
Pearsons correlation coefficients, univariate analysis of covariance in the form of 2 × 3 factorial design and
Hochbergs GT2 post hoc test.
Findings The questionnaires of 475 students were returned correctly (survey validity¼93 percent). The
results ofANCOVA after adjustment forconfounding variables suchas age and physical illness historyrevealed
that the existence of main effect for depressive mood (F¼31.50, df ¼1, p o0.0001) and PMS and PMDD
diagnoses( F ¼11.39,df ¼2, p o0.0001) wereassociated with increased aggression.However, there was no
significantinteraction effect on aggression levels( pW0.05). Additionally, posthoc tests revealed no significant
differences betweenthe diagnosis of PMS and PMDD in terms of aggression( pW0.05).
Research limitations/implications The present study has some limitations. Depressive mood and
diagnoses of PMS and PMDD were defined through relying on the self-report data and cut points suggested
by the questionnaires. Obviously, change of measurement tools or even cut points reduces the results
reliability and repeatability. Furthermore, the research plan does not allow us to infer causal relations and does
not provide information about the direction of the relationship between depression symptoms, PMS and
PMDD diagnoses, and aggression. Finally, the present study is relied on high schoolsdata, and the results
cannot be generalized to other adolescent girls.
Originality/value Despite the limitations of this study, its findings offer new insights into the factors
influencing the perpetration of aggression in Iranian adolescent girls. Depressed adolescent girls and those
receiving a PMS or PMDD diagnosis are more likely to develop aggression. These findings can be used in
high schools to design educational and health-based interventions in order to reduce and prevent anger and
resentment in adolescent girls.
Keywords Adolescent, Depression, Aggression, Girl, Premenstrual dysphoric disorder,
Premenstrual syndrome
Paper type Research paper
Aggression is considered a severe and increasing problem and one of the basic issues of
mental health among adolescents (Wang et al., 2015; Benarous et al., 2015). Problems
concerning improper expression of anger and aggression in interpersonal relationships have
attracted the attention of many specialists. The problems have also been investigated in terms
of social and public health as detrimental experience of the adolescence period (Painuly et al.,
2005). Adolescence, due to physical, emotional and cognitive changes, is regarded as a critical
period of human gro wth, and consider ing the fact that tod ay, there are numer ous stressful
Received 9 July 2019
Revised 25 September 2019
7 October 2019
Accepted 7 October 2019
Sajjad Rezaei is based at the
Department of Psychology,
University of Guilan,
Rasht, Iran.
DOI 10.1108/JACPR-06-2019-0422 VOL. 11 NO. 4 2019, pp.281-291, © Emerald Publishing Limited, ISSN 1759-6599

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