The Epidemiology of Aggression and Associated Factors among Iranian Adult Population: A National Survey

Jalal Poorolajal, Bahram Ebrahimi, Forouzan Rezapur-Shahkolai, Amin Doosti-Irani, Mahnaz Alizadeh, Jamal Ahmadpoor, Leila Moradi, Azam Biderafsh, Fateme Nikbakht, Zakie Golmohammadi, Ehsan Sarbazi, Samira Bahadivand, Marzieh Jahani Sayad Noveiri, Maryam Rezaei, Somayeh Ghorbani Gholiabad, Saber Heidari, Hadi Bagheri, Mojtaba Ghalandari, Fatemeh Zeynab Kiani, Narges Fakhranirad, Saeed Ghavi, Parivash Seydkhani


Background: This survey was conducted to determine the level of aggression among the Iranian adult population and underlying predisposing factors.

Study design: A cross-sectional study.

Methods: This cross-sectional study included 10,957 participants, involving 23 out of the 31 provinces of Iran in 2019. The outcome of interest was aggression, evaluated by the Buss & Perry aggression questionnaire. The association between aggression and 34 demographic, behavioral, social, and cultural characteristics was assessed using simple and multiple linear regression.

Results: The overall mean (SD) score of aggression was 77.10 (22.53). Based on the severity of aggression, the participants were categorized into four groups as follows: 2,464 (23.1%) nonaggressive, 4,692 (43.9%) mild, 3,071 (28.8%) moderate, and 454 (4.2%) severe aggressive. Aggression was more likely to occur in people with the following characteristics: younger ages, having several siblings, lower ranks of birth, having an intimate friend of the opposite sex, having an aggressive father/mother, history of parental divorce, interest in watching action/porn movies, listening to music, history of escape from home/school, using neuropsychiatric drugs, using illicit drugs, history of suicidal thoughts/attempt, and family conflict and hostility. Aggression was less likely to occur with the following characteristics: reading, regular physical exercise, the ability to control anger, regular prayer, adherence to avoid lying, respect to other people's rights, sexual satisfaction, and attachment to parents.

Conclusions: A majority of the population has some degree of aggression. Aggression is a multifactorial behavior corresponding with several demographical, social, cultural, and religious factors, some of which back to early childhood events.


Aggression; Adult; Risk factors; Behavior; Iran

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