Biological Methods of Stress Management

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  • Created on: 25-11-14 09:52
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Biological Methods
Stress Management physiological and psychological methods of reducing the negative
effects of stress.
The biological methods are designed to directly focus on the
biological stress response system. As the symptoms are
perceived to be the causes of stress, the methods address
them directly.
The drugs go into the blood stream and effect
neurotransmitters in the brain, which enable communication
between neurones. They slow down activity of the nervous
system. They usually reduce the symptoms but
psychological methods can be used afterwards.
Benzodiazepines
They increase the effect of neurotransmitter GABA which dampens neurones in the
brain.
GABA increases chloride ions in neurones which make it difficult to stimulate them.
Neural activity is slowed down, creating a sensation of calm and relaxation.
They also dampen excitatory effect of serotonin, having the same effect.
For short term usage as they have side effects such as cognitive impairment and
unsteadiness.
Davidson (1993)
Performed an assessment of BZ usage.
Participants were 75 patients with socialanxiety disorder.
Randomly assigned to drug or placebo treatment for 10 weeks.
Drugs were found to have had a sustained positive effect ­ 78% improved on
drugs, 20% with the placebo.
However there were reports of side effects such as forgetfulness.
Two years later there was found to be a significant advantage in function
suggesting BZs can be used for short and long term.
Evaluation
Cost effective and easy to administer.
Can become addictive over time if taken long term.
Only have a brief effectiveness as used for short term.
There can be side effects which reduce effectiveness of treatment ­ people may want to
stop taking them before symptoms are reduced.
Betablockers

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Block the transmission of nerve impulses.
Stress increases force and rate of the heartbeat, which is activated by
betaadrenergic receptors stimulated by noradrenaline and adrenaline.
Betablockers `sit' on receptors, meaning the individual's heart rate is reduced.
Lau et al (1992)
Carried out a metaanalysis assessing the effectiveness of betablockers.
They found that they reduced high blood pressure.
Also reduced risk of death by 20% with patients with heart disease, showing that
the drug can be a life saver.…read more

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