Psycology unit 2

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  • Stress Bodily responses to stress and research into stress and illness.
  • Stress Life Changes/Daily Hassles including research
  • Stress Workplace Stress including research
  • Stress Personality factors into stress including research
  • Stress Coping strategies
  • Stress Physiological Methods of stress management (Drugs)
  • Stress Psychological methods of stress management (Therapies)
  • Social Conformity, Factors, Explanations including research
  • Social Obedience, Factors, Explanations including research
  • Social Explanations of Independent Behaviour including research
  • Social Social Change and its implications
  • Abnormality Definitions of Abnormality and limitations
  • Abnormality Biological Approach, Drug and ECT Treatments
  • Abnormality Behavioural Approach and Systematic Desensitisation
  • Abnormality Cognitive approach and CBT (specifically REBT)
  • Abnormality Psychodynamic approach and Psychoanalysis.
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Two bodily responses to Stress:S.A.M

1. S.A.M (Sympathetic Adrenal-medullary Pathway)

·          This is the acute (immediate) response to stress

·         Cortex detects a stressor which triggers the Hypothalamus,

·         Then Sympathetic branch of the Autonomic nervous system is activated through the nervous system, stimulating the Adrenal Medulla, producing two hormones:

·         Adrenaline-increases heart rate for oxygen

·         Noradrenaline –sugar for energy.

·         This cause the Fight or Flight response, which causes bodily changes such as increase in heart rate (to carry around oxygen around the body quicker); an increase in blood pressure (veins and arteries narrow so blood pumps faster); an increase in muscle tension (which increases reaction time) and the dilation of pupils (helps one to be more aware of one’s surroundings).

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research into illness and stress

Aim: See if exam stress affects the functioning of the immune system; it was therefore a natural experiment, using a volunteer sample (75 first-year medical students) and repeated measures.

Procedure: Blood samples were taken of students one month before their exams (low stress period) and again on the first day of their exams (high stress period).

Method: The blood samples measured the participants’ immune functioning by counting the number of leucocytes (natural killer cells & T cells) –High number= strong immune system. Low, it meant the opposite.

Findings: The High stress period+ the number of killer cells and T cells = Low, low stress period + number = high. There was, therefore, a negative correlation between exam stress and immune functioning.

Conclusion: Exam stress is associated with immunosuppression. However, stress is only one factor that may affect the immune system.

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H.P.A (Pituitary Adrenal system)

·          This is the chronic (slow, long-term) response to stress.

·         Cortex detects stressor, triggering the Hypothalamus,

·         Activates release of hormone CRF,

·         The Pituitary gland in the brain is activated= release of hormone A.C.T.H, from Adrenal Cortex – this releases cortisol

·         Cortisol cause the liver to release glucose (fats and sugar), which provide continued energy for the Fight or Flight response. The immune system is suppressed during this process. 

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