Stress - Ch 10

Which of the following events can cause
Taking out a loan
Failing a test
Graduating from college
Watching a hockey game
 ALL FOUR. Stress-producing factors can be
pleasant or unpleasant and can include
physical challenges and goal achievement as
well as events that are perceived as negative.
Moderate exercise can stimulate which
of the following:
› Analgesia (pain relief)
› Birth of new brain cells
› Relaxation
 ALL THREE. Regular exercise is linked to
improvement in many dimensions of wellness
Which of the following can be a result of
chronic stress?
› Violence
› Heart attack
› Stroke
 ALL THREE. Chronic stress can last for years. People
who suffer from long-term stress may ultimately
become violent toward themselves or others. They
also run a greater than normal risk for certain
ailments, especially cardiovascular disease.
Stress refers to two different things:
› Situations that trigger physical and emotional
reactions  stressor
 A first date
 A final exam
› The reaction itself stress response
 Sweaty palms
 Pounding heart
Stress describes the general physical and
emotional state that accompanies a stress
Systems in our body
responsible for physical
response to stressors:
› Nervous system  brain,
spinal cord, nerves.
› Endocrine system  glands,
tissues and cells
Somatic nervous system: under
conscious supervision
› Moving your arm away from a
Autonomic nervous system: not
under conscious supervision
› Heart rate, breathing, blood
Parasympathetic division
› In control when you are
› Aids in digestion, storing
energy, promoting growth.
Sympathetic division
› Activated during times of
arousal, including exercise
and when there is an
› Sympathetic nerves use the
norepinephrine to exert their
actions on emergency related
During stress, the sympathetic nervous
system triggers the endocrine system.
Functions by releasing hormones and other
chemical messengers into the bloodstream
to influence metabolism and other body
Is specific, acting on target organs
Chemical messages and actions of
sympathetic nerves cause the release
of key hormones that trigger
physiological changes:
› Heart and respiration rates increase
› Hearing and vision become more acute
› The liver releases extra sugar into the
› Perspiration increases to cool the skin
› The brain releases endorphins – chemicals
that inhibit or block sensations of pain
Once the stressful situation
ends, the parasympathetic
division of the autonomous
nervous system takes
command and restores
The parasympathetic nervous
system calms your body down,
slowing a rapid heartbeat,
drying sweaty palms and
returning breathing to normal.
Is a survival mechanism
 Becomes inappropriate in some
Stop lights or traphic
When someone bothers you.
The physical response to stressors may vary in intensity from person to
Several factors help to explain these differences, all related to your
cognitive (mental ) appraisal of a potential stressor.
This appraisal is:
Highly individual
Strongly related to emotions
The facts of a situation typically are evaluated consistently from person
to person, but the personal outcome varies
Effective and ineffective responses
› Common emotional responses to stressors
include anxiety, depression and fear
› Behavioral responses to stressors are entirely
under our control. (Somatic Nervous System)
Effective responses
Ineffective responses
Learning timemanagement skills
Using tobacco, alcohol
or other drugs.
Personality and Stress
› Personality is the sum of cognitive behavioral
and emotional tendencies
› Clearly affects how people perceive and
react to stressors.
› Personality types:
 Type A
 Ultracompetitive, controlling,
impatient, aggressive and
even hostile
 Reacts explosively to stressors
and are upset by events that
others would consider only
 Type B
 Relaxed and contemplative
 Less frustrated by daily events and more tolerant of the
behavior of others.
 Type C
 Characterized by anger suppression, difficulty expressing
emotions, feelings of hopelessness and despair and an
exaggerated response to minor stressors.
Gender and Stress
› Behavioral responses to stressors,
such as crying or openly
expressing anger may be
deemed more appropriate for
one gender than other.
› Strict adherence to gender roles
can limit one’s response to stress
and can itself become a source
of stress.
Past Experiences
› Can profoundly influence the evaluation of
a potential stressor.
Physical, emotional and behavioral
responses to stress are intimately
Symptoms of Excess Stress
Physical symptoms
Emotional Symptoms
Behavioral Symptoms
•Dry mouth
•Excessive perspiration
•Frequent illnesses
•Gastrointestinal problems
•Grinding of teeth
•High blood pressure
•Pounding heart
•Stiff neck or aching lower
•Anxiety or edginess
•Hyper vigilance
•Inability to concentrate
•Trouble remembering things.
•Disrupted eating habits
•Disrupted sleeping habits
•Harsh treatment of others
•Problems communicating
•Sexual problems
•Social isolation
•Increased use of tobacco,
alcohol or other drugs.
Stress can increase vulnerability to many
 Several theories have been proposed to
explain the relationship between stress
and disease
› The general adaptation syndrome
› Allostatic load
› Psychoneuroimmunology
Hans Selye (1930 – 1940)
Described an universal and predictablee response
pattern to all stressors
Recognized that stressors can be either pleasant
(eustress) or unpleasant (distress).
The sequence of physical responses occurs in three
Fight- or-flight
Long term overexposure
to stress hormones such as
cortisol has been linked with health problems.
The long – term wear and tear of the stress
response is called allostatic load.
Depends on many factors including genetics,
life experiences, and emotional and
behavioral responses to stressors
When your allostatic load exceeds your ability
to cope, you are more likely to get sick.
The study of the interactions among the
nervous system, the endocrine system and the
immune system
 Stress, through the actions of the nervous and
endocrine systems, impairs the immune
system and thereby affects health.
› Hormones and chemical messengers released
during stress response influence the immune
system by affecting the number and efficiency of
immune system cells or lymphocytes
› Neuropeptides, the biochemical language
between brain and the immune system (also
language of emotions) can strongly influence the
functioning of the immune system.
› During stress response, blood pressure rises
› Emotional responses increase a person’s risk of CVD
Altered functioning of the immune system
› Changes in the immune system function include vulnerability to
colds and other infections, asthma, allergy attacks, susceptibility
to cancer and flare – ups chronic diseases (HIV, herpes).
Other health problems
Digestive problems
Tension headaches and migraines
Insomnia and fatigue
Menstrual irregularities, impotence and pregnancy
› Psychological problems: depression, anxiety, panic attacks,
eating disorders, post traumatic stress disorder.
Major life changes
› New jobs, graduation, marriage, moving out.
Daily hassles
› Losing your keys or wallet
College stressors
› Academic stress
› Interpersonal stress
› Time pressures
› Financial concerns
› Worries abut the future
Job-related stressors
› Tight schedules and overtime
› Worries about performance, salary, job security
and interactions with bosses, coworkers and
› Helping professions
Interpersonal and social stressors
› Community and society
› Prejudice and discrimination
› Language
Other stressors
› Environmental stressors: loud noises, unpleasant
smells, industrial accidents, violence and natural
› Internal stressors: personal goals, evaluate our
progress and performance, physical and
emotional states such as illness and exhaustion.
The best way to manage stress
is by pursuing a wellness lifestyle:
› Being physically active and doing exercise
 People who exercise react with milder physical
stress responses before, during and after exposure
to stressors
› Eating well
 Healthy, balanced diet helps to cope with stress
› Getting enough sleep
 Lack of sleep can be both a cause and an effect
of excess stress
› Finding social support
 Sharing fears, frustrations and joys
makes life richer and seems to
contribute to the well being of body
and mind.
› Communicating in an assertive way
 Respect the rights of others as well as
your own rights to prevent
potentially stressful situations from
getting out of control
› Striving for spiritual wellness
 Spiritual wellness is associated with
greater coping skills and higher
levels of overall wellness.
Learning to manage your time
Set priorities
Schedule tasks
Set realistic goals
Budget enough time
Break up long term goals into short term ones
Visualize the achievement of your goals
Keep track of the tasks you put off.
Consider doing your least favorite tasks first.
Consolidate tasks when possible
Identify quick transitional tasks
Delegate responsibility
Say no when necessary
Give yourself a break
Avoid your personal “time sinks”
Stop thinking or talking about what you’re going to do and
just do it
Changing destructive thinking
Reduce hostile, critical, suspicious and self-deprecating thoughts
Modify your expectations
Live in the present
Go with the flow
Cultivate your sense of humor
Writing a diary
› Helpful for those who are shy or introverted and find it difficult to
open up to others.
Relaxation techniques
› Progressive relaxation
› Visualization
› Listening to music
› Deep breathing
› Meditation
› Taijiquan
Other techniques
› Biofeedback:
 Measure of stress (heart rate, skin
temperature or muscle tensions)
mechanically monitored. Feedback
is given using sound.
› Hypnosis and self-hypnosis:
 An attentive perception and
concentration, which leads to
controlled imagination.
 Lets participants choose to feel
something other than anxiety or stress
or pain.
› Massage:
 Reduces the stress response,
depression and even increases
Peer counseling
› Student health center or counseling centers
Professional help
› Psychotherapy
Find out if it’s stress or something more serious such as
depression, anxiety or other emotional problems.
› Symptoms for depression include
 Negative self concept
 Prevasive feelings of sadness and hopelessness
 Loss of peasure in usual activities
 Poor appetite and weight loss
 Insomnia or disrturbed sleep
 Restlessness or fatigue
 Thoughts of worthlessness and guilt
 Throuble concentrating or making decisions
 Throughts of death or suicide.
LAB 10,1
LAB 10.2
Identify your stress level
an key stressors
LAB 10,3
Developing spiritual

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