, Volume 72, Issue 3, pp 251-262

Defense Styles and Personality Dimensions of Research Subjects with Anxiety and Depressive Disorders

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We used the Bond Defense Style and Cloninger Tridimensional Personality questionnaires to assess defense styles and personality dimensions in subjects with anxiety and depressive disorders. When measured against a comparison group, maladaptive defense style scores were significantly higher in those with major depression, panic disorder, generalized anxiety disorder, and social phobia, and higher at a trend level in the subjects with obsessive-compulsive disorder and mixed anxiety and depression. However, there were no differences in adaptive defense style scores between the subjects and the comparison group. The harm avoidance personality dimension scores were significantly higher in subjects with both anxiety and depressive disorders than in the comparison group. The harm avoidance scores correlated positively with the maladaptive defense scores, but negatively with the adaptive defense scores. These findings are discussed in terms of severity of illness, level of functioning, and relationships between Axis I and II disorders.