Denial: When it helps, when it hurts

Denial is a coping mechanism that gives you time to adjust to distressing situations — but staying in denial can interfere with treatment or your ability to tackle challenges.

By Mayo Clinic Staff

If you’re in denial, you’re trying to protect yourself by refusing to accept the truth about something that’s happening in your life.

In some cases, initial short-term denial can be a good thing, giving you time to adjust to a painful or stressful issue. It might also be a precursor to making some sort of change in your life. But