Stress, Causes of stress, Booklet 1

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  • Created by: Ella M
  • Created on: 12-03-13 13:43
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  • Causes of Stress
    • Definition: stress is used to represent the reaction we have psychologically and physiologically to circumstances that are perceived to be threatening to the individual
      • Fight of flight response - when out bodies prepare us for action as it feels we are being threatened, this is not always useful in modern times
      • If we are stressed we are more likely to get ill because our bodies are producing adrenaline which weakens our immune system
        • General Adaptation Syndrome (GAS)
          • Stage 1 - alarm, the automatic nervous system responds
          • Stage 2 - resistance, the body reaction ceases and we appear to cope, however, the stress is still building
          • Stage 3 - Exhaustion, the person will become depressed and unable to concentrate
          • Selye
    • Work
      • Stress in the workplace can originate in 6 areas (In Work People Rarely React Calmly)
        • Role stress
        • Physical Environment
        • Role conflict
        • Work Pressure
        • Control
        • Interpersonal  Factors
      • Johansson et al
        • to measure the physiological and psychological stress response in two categories of employees
        • one group at high risk of stress, the other at low risk of stress
        • each participant had to do a daily urine sample when they arrived at work and then four other times during the day
        • also had to give a self report of mood and alertness
        • the high risk group had adrenaline levels nearly twice that of their baseline, these continued to rise throughout the day
        • in the self report the high risk group rated their well-being as being lower than that of the low risk group
    • Hassles
      • Major life events - significant events that disrupt our daily routine
        • Means we have to use much more mental energy
      • Hassles are minor stressors
      • Kanner et al
        • To compare the hassles and uplifts scale with the life events scale
        • 100 people from California - mostly white and middle class
        • hassles rating scale every month for 9 months, life events rating scale after 10 months and the Hopkins symptom checklist and the Bradburn morale scale every month for 9 months
        • hassels were consistant month to month
        • men: life events correlated positively with hassles and negatively with hassels
        • Women:  the more life events they reported the more hassles and uplifts they reported
        • hassles were a more powerful predictor of psychological symptoms than life events
    • Lack of control
      • Rotter
        • External Locus of control: believe things happen because someone or something else causes them to
        • Internal locus of control: believe they are personally responsible for things
          • More likely to take action to manage stressful situations
      • Geer and Maisel
        • to see if perceived control or actual control can reduce stress reactions to adverse stimuli
        • Three groups
          • Group 1 : given control, given a button to terminate the photos and given a 10 second warning tone, knew what was going to happen
          • Group 2: not given control but given predictability, heard warning tone and knew what was going to happen
          • Group 3 : not given predictability or control
        • participants shown photos of dead car crash victims
        • GSR and heart rate monitored
        • group 2 showed most stress, group 1 showed least
        • more control means less stress
  • General Adaptation Syndrome (GAS)
    • Stage 1 - alarm, the automatic nervous system responds
    • Stage 2 - resistance, the body reaction ceases and we appear to cope, however, the stress is still building
    • Stage 3 - Exhaustion, the person will become depressed and unable to concentrate
    • Selye

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