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Anxiety Stress Coping. 2013 Sep;26(5):558-72. doi: 10.1080/10615806.2012.734810. Epub 2012 Oct 19.

A pathway from neuroticism to depression: examining the role of emotion regulation.

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a Department of Psychology , University of Maine , Orono , ME , USA.


We examined whether the relation between neuroticism and the severity of depressive symptoms is mediated by emotion regulation. At the same time, we examined whether the type of emotion regulation strategy (maladaptive vs. adaptive) moderates the effects of neuroticism on depression severity. Community participants (N=533; 235 women and 298 men) completed a set of questionnaires over the Internet. We used structural equation modeling to examine the mediational role of emotion regulation in linking neuroticism and the levels of depressive symptoms. The well-documented relation between neuroticism and depression is mediated by individual differences in the use of different emotion regulation strategies. More specifically, the use of maladaptive forms of emotion regulation, but not reappraisal, fully mediated the association between neuroticism and the severity of depressive symptoms.

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