The transformation of stress coping and defense style after studying abroad and mental health

Poster B63, Tuesday, October 9, 11:30 am - 1:00 pm, Essex Ballroom

Yu SAKAGAMI1; 1Preventive Services, School of Public Health, Kyoto University

It is known that studying abroad is a risk factor for mental health from the viewpoint of travel medicine; however, it has not been clearly explained what personality type is more vulnerable to mental disorders, and how they associate with the stress coping and defense style. Methods: About 900 students dispatched overseas by International Education and Student Mobility Division, Kyoto University, for their transformation in stress coping and defense style before and after studying abroad. Results: Before and after studying abroad, there was not a significant change in terms of General Health Questionnaire (GHQ); however, for the stress coping style, cognitive re-interpretation index became significantly higher after studying abroad. For the defense style, an immature defense mechanism had a significant increase. In addition, the increased group in cognitive re-interpretation index in stress coping style showed the significantly lower point of GHQ than the non-increased group. Furthermore, the increased group in immature defense mechanism showed a significantly higher point of GHQ than the non-increased group. Conclusion: In summary, under the psychological stress caused by experiencing different cultures, it is estimated that there are two groups of students who can successfully maintain their mental health by trying the cognitive re-interpretation and who are maladapted by strengthening the immature defense mechanism.

Topic Area: Stress Responsivity

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