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Professional paper

Stress coping styles in relation to various psychiatric disorders

Zlata Pjević ; University Psychiatric Hospital Vrapče, Zagreb, Croatia
Slađana Štrkalj Ivezić ; University Psychiatric Hospital Vrapče, Zagreb, Croatia
Anja Melada ; Department of Psychiatry, University Hospital Dubrava, Zagreb, Croatia

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page 57-70

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Introduction: Stress is one of the most common triggers of processes that lead to psychiatric disorders. Our objective was to determine whether there are differences in coping styles among participants with psychiatric disorders compared to a healthy population and differences in coping styles between the participants with psychiatric disorders due to demographic characteristics. Methods: Participants: The study included 120 participants divided into 4 groups of 30 participants. The participants diagnosed with a psychiatric disorder were divided into three groups: participants with a depressive disorder, anxiety disorders and psychotic disorders, and by gender, level of education, age, employment, marital status, length of treatment and number of hospitalizations. The fourth group consisted of healthy participants. Instruments: The adapted version of the dispositional form of the COPE questionnaire (Coping Orientation to Problems Experienced) was used. Results: between the groups of participants with mental disorders and the healthy participants, coping styles showed statistically significant differences in positive interpretation, denial, behavioral disengagement, alcohol use, physical isolation and the suppression of emotions as well differences in terms of gender, age, marital status, occupation and employment. Discussion: Differences in coping styles in patients with psychiatric disorders are not specific to their psychopathology which is consistent with studies of other researchers. Participants in our study had finished or were in treatment as outpatients where psychosocial treatments are used, which could have affected their coping styles. Conclusion: The results of the study confirm that healthy people compared to people with psychiatric disorders use functional coping styles. We did not find specific coping styles in relation to a particular diagnostic group, which supports the data that coping depends on a number of factors.


stress, coping with stress, coping styles, psychobiosocial model, psychosocial interventions

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