This study proposed a structural model in which the association between perfectionism and physical health is mediated by positive and negative affect and coping strategies. A sample of 119 Illinois Wesleyan undergraduate students completed questionnaires that assessed perfectionism, affect, coping strategies, physical health, and preventative and risky health behaviors. Results offer partial support for the proposed model and include the following: maladaptive perfectionism is related to the experience of more physical health symptoms, and this relation is mediated by negative affect and maladaptive coping. Adaptive perfectionism is related to the performance of more preventative health behaviors, mediated by positive affect; and maladaptive coping is related to fewer physician visits, mediated by adaptive coping. Implications for understanding the relation between perfectionism and physical health and for improving the health of individuals are discussed.
Visk, '09, Carly A., "Does Perfecting Your Day Keep the Doctor Away?: Examining the Roles of Affect and Coping in the Association Between Perfectionism and Physical Health" (2009). Honors Projects. Paper 132.