Dr. David B. Adams – Psychological Blog

Psychology of Illness, Pain, Anxiety and Depression

Defense Mechanisms

Defense mechanisms are (largely) unconscious ways we use to defend ourselves against anxiety. Simply _not thinking_ (repression) about our bad marriage or failing to accept we drink too much (denial) keeps us from becoming upset.

Somatization, the act of focusing upon bodily complaints rather than dealing with real life issues, is common among injured workers. They become angry at doctors and employers/insurers rather than themselves. Their bodily complaints are either unfounded or grossly exaggerated.

Their unconscious goal is to keep themselves from realizing and dealing with what they may have done to their own lives: They never achieved enough education or pursued a career path that would support them in
event of lost time from work or job change. They (somatize) focus upon their injury as a way of repressing the fact that they are ultimately responsible for their own lives and their own future.

Comments for this post are closed.
Old

Old and in the way

You will find that during any economic recessionary period, the problems for the older worker, especially those approaching …
Read Blog Post

Personality Disorders Explained

Personality is merely a term used to describe the sum total of characteristics that make us each unique. We each have a personality …
Read Blog Post

Foreign Born Workers

The following case history will be very familiar to most of you. This is a middle aged man, sustaining work-related back …
Read Blog Post