Stress Chapter 15

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Stress Chapter 15

  1. 1. Stress and Health Psychology Chapter 12
  2. 2. What is Stress? <ul><li>Many Definitions </li></ul><ul><li>Stress is the anxious or threatening feeling resulting from our appraisal of a situation and our reaction to demands placed upon us. </li></ul><ul><li>Event that produces tension or worry </li></ul><ul><li>Response to an event that produces tension or worry </li></ul>
  3. 3. Stress <ul><li>A state of psychological tension or strain </li></ul><ul><li>Adjustment is any attempt to cope with stress </li></ul><ul><li>Health psychology </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Studies the relationship between psychological factors and physical health </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Stressors </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Events or circumstances that trigger stress </li></ul></ul>
  4. 4. Sources of Stress <ul><li>Life changes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social Readjustment Rating Scale (SRRS) </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Assesses impact of major life changes </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>Everyday Hassles </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Pressure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Occurs when we feel forced to speed up or shift focus of our behavior </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Frustration </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Occurs when a person is prevented from reaching a goal </li></ul></ul></ul>
  5. 5. Sources of Stress <ul><li>Conflict </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Simultaneous existence of incompatible demands, opportunities, goals, or needs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Approach/approach conflict occurs when there is a conflict between two appealing possibilities </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Avoidance/avoidance conflict occurs when there is a choice between two undesirable possibilities </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Approach/avoidance conflict is the result of being simultaneously attracted to and repelled by the same goal </li></ul></ul></ul>
  6. 6. Stress and Individual Differences <ul><li>Differences in reaction to stressors may be due to an individual’s appraisal </li></ul>
  7. 7. Stress and Individual Differences <ul><li>Hardiness </li></ul><ul><ul><li>A characteristic of people who can tolerate stress well or even thrive on it </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Resilience </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ability of a person to “bounce back” after a stressful event </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Self-imposed stress </li></ul>
  8. 8. Coping With Stress <ul><li>Direct coping </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Intentional efforts to change an uncomfortable situation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Confrontation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Acknowledging stress directly and initiating a solution </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Compromise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Choosing a more realistic goal when an ideal goal cannot be met </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Withdrawal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Avoiding a situation when other options are not practical </li></ul></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Coping With Stress <ul><li>Defensive coping </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Can occur when you cannot identify the source of stress or cannot do anything to change the situation </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Defense mechanisms (discussed in chapter 11) may be adopted to cope with stress </li></ul></ul>
  10. 10. Socioeconomic and Gender Differences in Coping <ul><li>Lower socioeconomic status can lead to a more stressful environment and there may be fewer resources for dealing with stress </li></ul><ul><li>Women and men seem to be equally affected by stress physiologically </li></ul><ul><li>There are apparent differences between the genders in the perception of stress </li></ul><ul><li>Men and women may use different coping strategies </li></ul>
  11. 11. The Biology of Stress <ul><li>Fight or flight response </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Release of adrenaline and norepinephrine into the bloodstream increasing heart rate and other functions to deal with stress </li></ul></ul><ul><li>General Adaptation Syndrome (GAS) </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Alarm reaction </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Resistance </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Exhaustion </li></ul></ul>
  12. 12. Stress and Heart Disease <ul><li>Frequent or chronic stress can cause damage to the heart and blood vessels </li></ul><ul><li>Type A personality </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Respond to life events with impatience and hostility </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Correlated with development of heart disease </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Type B personality </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Relaxed and easygoing </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. Stress and the Immune System <ul><li>Psychoneuroimmunology </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Study of the interaction between stress and the immune, endocrine, and nervous systems </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Chronic stress can suppress immune function </li></ul><ul><li>Possible link between stress and cancer </li></ul>
  14. 14. Methods of Reducing Stress <ul><li>Calm down </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Exercise </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Relaxation training </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Reach out </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Social support network </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Religion </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Studies have shown an association between religion and lower stress </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>May be related to social support </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Altruism </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Giving to others because is gives you pleasure </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Shown to be a good way to reduce stress </li></ul></ul>
  15. 15. Methods of Reducing Stress <ul><li>Learn to cope effectively </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Proactive coping </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Anticipate stressful events and take steps to avoid them </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Positive reappraisal </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Alter the way you think about a stressful situation </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Making the best of a tense or stressful event </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Humor </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Finding the funny things in a situation </li></ul></ul></ul>
  16. 16. Coping With Stress at College <ul><li>Plan ahead </li></ul><ul><li>Prioritize </li></ul><ul><li>Exercise </li></ul><ul><li>Listen to music, watch TV, or go out as a study break </li></ul><ul><li>Talk to others </li></ul><ul><li>Meditate or use other relaxation techniques </li></ul>
  17. 17. Adopt a Healthy Lifestyle <ul><li>Eat a well-balanced diet </li></ul><ul><li>Exercise </li></ul><ul><li>Quit smoking </li></ul><ul><li>Avoid high risk behaviors </li></ul>
  18. 18. Sources of Extreme Stress <ul><li>Unemployment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Stages of relief, optimism, doubt, malaise, cynicism </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Divorce and separation </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Ambivalence, feelings of failure, sadness, and fear </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Bereavement </li></ul>
  19. 19. Sources of Extreme Stress <ul><li>Catastrophes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Shock stage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Suggestible stage </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Recovery stage </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Combat and other threatening personal attacks </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Effects can linger </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Can lead to depression and other disorders </li></ul></ul>
  20. 20. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder <ul><li>Characterized by episodes of anxiety, sleeplessness, and nightmares from a disturbing event in the past </li></ul><ul><li>Victims may withdraw from social life or job and family responsibilities </li></ul>
  21. 21. Traumatic events <ul><li>Traumatic events that may trigger PTSD include: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>violent personal assaults </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sexual assault </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Physical attack </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Abuse </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Stabbing </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>natural disasters </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Accidents </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Military combat. </li></ul></ul>
  22. 22. Symptoms of PTSD <ul><li>Re-experiencing the event through flashbacks or nightmares </li></ul><ul><li>Avoiding people, places or thoughts that bring back memories of the trauma </li></ul><ul><li>Feeling angry & unable to trust people </li></ul><ul><li>Social withdrawal </li></ul><ul><li>Numbness </li></ul><ul><li>Insomnia </li></ul><ul><li>Lack of concentration </li></ul>
  23. 23. How long do symptoms last? <ul><li>The symptoms of PTSD can start after a delay of weeks, or even months. They usually appear within 3 months after the traumatic event. </li></ul><ul><li>Some people get better within 6 months. Others may have the illness for much longer. </li></ul>
  24. 24. Consequences <ul><li>Physiological outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Psychological outcomes </li></ul><ul><li>Self-destructive behaviors </li></ul>
  25. 25. Physiological outcomes <ul><li>Neurobiological changes </li></ul><ul><li>Psychophysiological changes </li></ul><ul><li>Headache </li></ul><ul><li>Stomach or digestive problems </li></ul><ul><li>Dizziness </li></ul>
  26. 26. Psychological outcomes <ul><li>Depression </li></ul><ul><li>Other anxiety disorders (such as phobias, panic, and social anxiety) </li></ul><ul><li>Splitting off from the present </li></ul><ul><li>Eating disorders </li></ul>
  27. 27. Self-destructive behaviors <ul><li>Low self esteem </li></ul><ul><li>Alcohol and drug abuse </li></ul><ul><li>Suicidal attempts </li></ul><ul><li>Self-injury </li></ul><ul><li>Risky sexual behaviors leading to unplanned pregnancy or STDs, including HIV </li></ul>
  28. 28. Treatment <ul><li>PTSD is treated by a variety of forms of psychotherapy (talk therapy) and pharmacotherapy (medication). </li></ul><ul><li>There is no single best treatment, but some treatments are quite promising, especially cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT). </li></ul>
  29. 29. Treatment <ul><li>A Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is a psychotherapy based on modifying beliefs and behaviors, with the aim of influencing disturbed emotions. </li></ul>
  30. 30. Cognitive Restructuring <ul><li>Cognitive restructuring aims at replacing dysfunctional thoughts with more realistic & helpful ones. </li></ul><ul><li>e.g. </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’ll never be normal again..I am gonna die” </li></ul><ul><li>“ I’ll get better..It will just take time” </li></ul><ul><li>Or “I feel scared..But I am safe” </li></ul>
  31. 31. Exposure Therapy <ul><li>In exposure therapy your goal is to have less fear about your memories. </li></ul><ul><li>By talking about your trauma repeatedly with your therapist, you'll learn to get control of your thoughts and feelings about the trauma. </li></ul><ul><li>You'll learn that you do not have to be afraid of your memories anymore. </li></ul>
  32. 32. Medication <ul><li>The use of medication in addition to psychotherapy has been shown to be beneficial in the treatment of PTSD. </li></ul><ul><li>The most widely used drug treatments for PTSD are the selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (SSRIs), such as Prozac & Zoloft </li></ul><ul><li>N.B. Drug trials for PTSD are still at a very early stage </li></ul>
  33. 33. The Well-Adjusted Person <ul><li>Psychologists may judge the adjustment value of an action by the following criteria </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Does the action realistically meet the demands of the situation or just postpone the resolution of the problem? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Does the action meet the individual's needs? </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Is the action compatible with the well-being of others? </li></ul></ul>

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