Chapter three Stress and Health Psychology realworldpsychology

Chapter three Stress and Health Psychology realworldpsychology

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

• Understanding stress • Stress and illness • Health psychology and stress

management

Chapter three Stress and Health Psychology

realworldpsychology

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

Things You’ll Learn in Chapter 3 Does the use of social media lead to stress? Q1

Q2 Can loneliness make you sick?

Are people with stressful jobs at increased risk of experiencing a heart attack? Q3

Does watching televised coverage of natural disasters increase symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder?

Q4

Could thinking about the “silver linings” of a stressful event, or sharing it with others, reduce depression?

Q5

• Stress = the interpretation of specific events as threatening or challenging

• Stressor = trigger or stimulus that induces stress

What is Stress?

What stressors

cause stress for you?

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

realworldpsychology

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

• Chronic stress = continuous state of arousal where demands are perceived as greater than resources available

• Significant source of negative stress • Examples?

Chronic Stress

War, poverty, discrimination, poor working conditions, repressive political climate, environmental discomfort/noise

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

realworldpsychology

• Social life can be both rewarding and stressful, even online. Survey of college student attitude about Facebook (Charles, 2011): – Facebook makes them anxious – Delay responses to friend requests – Rejecting friend requests creates guilt

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

Does the use of social media lead to stress?

Q1

• Approach-approach = choosing between two desirable options

• Avoidance-avoidance = choosing between two undesirable options

• Approach-avoidance = one option

has both positive and negative characteristics

Conflict as Stressor

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• Hassles = minor problems in daily life can add up to be a major stressor

• Burnout = physical, mental, and emotional exhaustion from persistent hassles

• Frustration = negative emotional state arises from blocked goal – The more motivated we are, the more frustrated

we are when goal is blocked

A little can feel like a lot

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

General Adaptation Syndrome (GAS) – Hans Selye • Bodies are well designed for temporary stress, but poorly

prepared for chronic stress • Three phases: alarm, resistance, exhaustion • BUT, not all stressors have similar effects

Effects of Stress

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• Cortisol is released to help you fight stressor, but chronically high cortisol suppresses the immune system

• Pyschoneuroimmunology = studies effects of psychological and other factors on the immune system

Stress and Illness

• Loneliness is a chronic stressor that can impair the immune system (Jaremka et al., 2013)

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

Can loneliness make you sick? Q2

realworldpsychology Even short-term stress affects cognitive functioning • Restricts the retrieval of existing memories,

impedes the creation of new memories • How can you apply this?

– Can stress of exam affect memory? – Difficult to think clearly during

an emergency?

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realworldpsychology Long-term stress has severe cognitive effects • Permanent damage to hippocampus • Damaged hippocampus can’t provide

feedback to hypothalamus, so cortisol continues to be released

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STRESS AND ILLNESS

How stress is related to four serious illnesses: • Gastric ulcers • Cancer • Cardiovascular disorders • Posttraumatic stress disorder

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• Ulcers = lesions to the lining of the stomach and upper small intestines

• Stress itself does not cause ulcers • Bacterium (H. plyori) damages stomach wall

and can be helped with antibiotics • BUT, 75% of control subjects (no ulcers) also

have the same bacterium • So, bacteria cause ulcers ONLY in people

compromised by stress (Fink, 2011)

Gastric Ulcers

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• Cancer occurs when cells divide rapidly, forming a tumor and invading healthy tissue

• Immune system checks the uncontrolled growth by attacking abnormal cells

• If immune system is compromised by stress, it is less able to fight cancerous growth

• Note: research does not show that stress causes cancer or that positive attitudes can fight it off, but does show that stress increases the spread of cancer cells to other organs

Cancer

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• Heart disease includes coronary heart disease, angina, heart attack

• Stress hormones (cortisol and adrenaline) in the bloodstream increase heart rate and send fat and glucose into the blood for energy

• If no physical activity occurs (fight or flight), fat in bloodstream sticks to walls of blood vessels

• Job-related stress = 23% more likely to have heart attack

Cardiovascular Disorders

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Are people with stressful jobs at increased risk of experiencing a heart attack?

Q3

• Type A – intense, ambitious, driven personality. Higher stress if hostility is included. More interpersonal conflicts

• Type B – less competitive, more relaxed, less stress

• Positive Affect/Emotion – people with general happiness, joy, enthusiasm have fewer colds, strokes, and longer life expectancy

Personality Variables

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• Exposure to serious trauma (not just military service) or recurring exposure

• Recurrent memories, dreams, flashbacks • Persistent avoidance of stimuli related

to event • Negative changes in mood, negative

self-thought, detached from others • Irritability, anger, reckless behavior,

sleep disturbances

Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

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• Simply watching TV coverage of natural disasters can increase PTSD symptoms, especially in kids

PTSD

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Does watching televised coverage of natural disasters increase symptoms of posttraumatic stress disorder?

Q4

HEALTH PSYCHOLOGY AND STRESS MANAGEMENT

Health psychology studies how people stay healthy, why they become ill, and how they respond to illness

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

• Study the effects of stress on the immune system

• Goal: reduce psychological distress and unhealthy behaviors

• Employed by medical centers and as independent consultants

• Educate public about health maintenance

What Health Psychologists Do

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Coping with Stress • Problem-focused coping:

decrease or eliminate stressor

• Emotion-focused coping: relieve or regulate emotional reaction when stressor can’t be changed

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• Even though emotion-focused coping doesn’t change the problem, thinking about the benefits of the stressful event increases positive mood

• Must reflect accurate reappraisal, not be overused, and not distort reality

Coping

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Could thinking about the “silver linings” of a stressful event, or sharing it with others, reduce depression?

Q5

• Positive attitude leads to view of stress as enhancing/ adaptive rather than debilitating

• Locus of Control (LOC) – Internal LOC = belief that you

control your own fate leads to effective decisions and healthy lifestyle

– External LOC = belief that outside forces control fate, leading to powerlessness, higher stress

Resources for Healthy Living

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• Mindfulness-based stress reduction (MBSD): training consciousness to attend to ongoing events in nonjudgmental way

• Social support: people with greater social support have better health outcomes, greater psychological and physical well-being, faster recovery, and longer life expectancy

Resources for Healthy Living

After surgery, those with more social support have less anxiety, fewer narcotics, are released from hospital sooner

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

r e a l wo r l d p s y ch o lo g y

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

© 2014 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved.

  • Slide Number 1
  • Slide Number 2
  • What is Stress?
  • Slide Number 4
  • Chronic Stress
  • Slide Number 6
  • Conflict as Stressor
  • A little can feel like a lot
  • Effects of Stress
  • Stress and Illness
  • Slide Number 11
  • Slide Number 12
  • Stress and Illness
  • Gastric Ulcers
  • Cancer
  • Cardiovascular Disorders
  • Personality Variables
  • Posttraumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
  • PTSD
  • Health psychology and stress management
  • What Health Psychologists Do
  • Coping with Stress
  • Coping
  • Resources for Healthy Living
  • Resources for Healthy Living
  • Slide Number 26
  • Slide Number 27
  • Slide Number 28
  • Slide Number 29

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