Comparing Defense Mechanisms, Resilience and Cognitive Distortion of Patients with Multiple Sclerosis and Healthy Individuals

  •  Javad Setareh    
  •  Mani B. Monajemi    
  •  Mahmood Abedini    
  •  Masoumeh Tasha    
  •  Sepehr Setareh    


Objective: The debilitating role of emotion and stress in multiple sclerosis (MS) has been highlighted in various literatures. The aim of this study is to evaluate role of defense mechanisms, resilience and cognitive distortion, which are considered influential factors with respect to stress management and emotion regulation among patients with MS.

Materials and Methods: This study consisted of 100 patients with MS and 100 healthy individuals in Sari (Mazandaran province, Iran), who were selected via convenient sampling method. In order to collect data, we used Defensive Style Questionnaire (DSQ40), Connor-Davidson Resilience Scale (CD_RISK) and Abdollahzadeh’s cognitive distortions scale (CDS).

Results: According to results of currents study, there is no significant difference among people with MS and healthy individuals in term of using defense mechanisms at Mature and Neurotic levels (sig>0.05) and there is significant difference between healthy people and people with MS with respect to immature level (sig<0.05). The findings by Conner-Davidson Resilience Scale (CD-RISK) showed that the resilience of healthy people is more than people with MS (65/14 versus 57/5). The study also found that healthy people have more average cognitive distortion in comparing to MS patients (72/96 vs 67/7). Results showed that there is significant difference in overgeneralization, disqualifying the positives, emotional reasoning, expression of should and personalization among healthy people and people with multiple sclerosis (sig <0.05) but there is no significant difference among other indicators of cognitive distortions (All or Nothing Thinking, Filtering, Jumping To Conclusion, Magnification versus Minimization and Labeling) (Sig> 0.05).

Conclusion: Current study, highlighted importance of evaluating psychological variables and their influences on quality of life among MS patients. It appears plausible that assessment of MS patients regarding their defense mechanisms, resiliency and cognitive distortion is essential; after aforementioned assessment clinicians can tailor suitable psychotherapeutic intervention with respect to exclusive needs of patients.

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