defense mechanism


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defense mechanism

n.
1. Biology A physiological reaction of an organism used in self-protection, as against infection.
2. Psychology Any of various usually unconscious mental processes, including denial, projection, rationalization, and repression, that protect the ego from shame, anxiety, conflict, loss of self-esteem, or other unacceptable feelings or thoughts.

defense′ mech`anism


n.
an unconscious process that protects an individual from unacceptable or painful ideas or impulses.
[1890–95]
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Noun1.defense mechanism - (psychiatry) an unconscious process that tries to reduce the anxiety associated with instinctive desires
unconscious process, process - a mental process that you are not directly aware of; "the process of denial"
psychiatry, psychological medicine, psychopathology - the branch of medicine dealing with the diagnosis and treatment of mental disorders
compensation - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism that conceals your undesirable shortcomings by exaggerating desirable behaviors
conversion - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism represses emotional conflicts which are then converted into physical symptoms that have no organic basis
denial - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism that denies painful thoughts
displacement - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism that transfers affect or reaction from the original object to some more acceptable one
idealisation, idealization - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism that splits something you are ambivalent about into two representations--one good and one bad
intellectualisation, intellectualization - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism that uses reasoning to block out emotional stress and conflict
isolation - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism in which memory of an unacceptable act or impulse is separated from the emotion originally associated with it
projection - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism by which your own traits and emotions are attributed to someone else
psychoanalytic process - a process that is assumed to occur in psychoanalytic theory
rationalisation, rationalization - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism by which your true motivation is concealed by explaining your actions and feelings in a way that is not threatening
reaction formation - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism in which a person unconsciously develops attitudes and behavior that are the opposite of unacceptable repressed desires and impulses and serve to conceal them; "his strict morality is just a reaction formation to hide his sexual drive"
regression - (psychiatry) a defense mechanism in which you flee from reality by assuming a more infantile state
repression - (psychiatry) the classical defense mechanism that protects you from impulses or ideas that would cause anxiety by preventing them from becoming conscious
References in periodicals archive ?
Contract notice: accident insurance for personnel assigned to the defense mechanism against forest fires castilla-la mancha, and geacam sa-103-tt-0-032-16 / se56
The device of the research is Defense Mechanism Inventory (DMI) has been developed by N.
Christina says that guilt may be a defense mechanism against feelings of helplessness.
In Arsovski's view, there is no point to examine the decriminalization of the slander without, at the same time, providing: complete functioning of the law on access to information, collect the evidence in the processes for slander in an official and not private way and without defense mechanism by means of so-called reasonable measures.
In the study led by Evgeny Nudler, PhD, the Julie Wilson Anderson Professor of Biochemistry at NYU School of Medicine, researchers found evidence that H2S acts as a general defense mechanism against oxidative stress, the process through which many antibiotics kill bacteria.
elegans model explored PCD as a possible defense mechanism.
It would be a mistake, however, to look at it mainly as an economic defense mechanism against Asia.
Visit this Web site from the Australian Museum to learn more about the defense mechanism of the sea slug: www.
Perhaps it's a defense mechanism to blunt the sting of criticism when he strays from the script.
RNA silencing was first noticed in plants when attempts to create transgenic plants that overexpressed a natural gene often had the opposite effect; later it was found to be an evolutionarily conserved defense mechanism against plant RNA viruses and other molecular parasites.
This measure was developed specifically for the purpose of this study and is based on the conceptual framework and format of the Defense Mechanism Inventory (DMI; see Gleser & Ihilevich, 1969).
Defense Agency chief Gen Nakatani on Wednesday recommended creating a comprehensive defense mechanism encompassing a large number of nations including Japan, China and Russia.

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