What is it about?

Coping mechanisms and defense mechanisms are both mental strategies people use to process, interpret, and respond to stressors. But how do they actually differ from each other, and are the differences talked about in theoretical work the same as differences seen in research? This paper explores the theoretical differences between coping and defense mechanisms and reviews the empirical literature to understand how these mechanisms actually differ in practice.

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Why is it important?

Adaptational processes like coping and defense mechanisms are fundamental to management of stress and symptomology related to adaptive functioning. Understanding the relationship between these mechanisms can inform our understanding of how and when to intervene when we observe coping and defense mechanism use.

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Coping and defense mechanisms: A scoping review., Clinical Psychology Science and Practice, May 2023, American Psychological Association (APA),
DOI: 10.1037/cps0000139.
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