What Is Stress? Chapter 1 Chapter Overview Important researchers of stress and their contributions Types of stress Stress reactivity: general adaptation syndrome Defining stress Before we begin, ask yourself? What stresses you out? How do you deal with stress? Before we formally define stress, let?s take a look at some influential researchers and how they contributed to our knowledge of stress. Walter Cannon First to describe the effects of acute stress Termed this stress reaction as the fight-or-flight response A primitive response that quickly increases heart rate, respiration, blood pressure, and serum cholesterol Hans Selye Studied the effects of long-term (chronic) stress Summarized his findings by proposing a three-phase process called the general adaptation syndrome alarm reaction stage of resistance stage of exhaustion Other Influential Researchers Simeons -- related evolution to psychosomatic disease (twentieth century concept) Wolff, LeShan, Engel -- studied illness, disease, and stress Friedman & Rosenman -- identified relationship between stress and coronary heart disease Simonton -- imagery and cancer therapy Techniques and concepts have developed over the years, including: Relaxation response (Benson) Autogenic training (Schultz, Luthe) Progressive muscular relaxation, bracing, imagery (Jacobson) Biofeedback (Budzynski) Stress Theory Several theories explain the causes of stress: Life events theory: situation requires more resources than are available Hardiness theory: one?s attitude toward the events determines stress Social support theory: insufficient social support for responding to event The Stressor Stressor (stimulus) biological psychological sociological philosophical Stress reactivity (fight-or-flight response) All effects are based on duration and degree of one?s physiological reaction There may be gender differences Stress Reactivity Definition of Stress Mason described the different uses of the word stress: stimulus response whole spectrum of interacting factors (Lazarus) stimulus-response interaction Is the glass half full or half empty? A situation can be stressful or not -- it all depends on your perception of the event A response to stress can be effective or not -- it depends on your resources and coping strategies Refer to table 1.2 Relationship between stress and illness?. Goals for Stress Management Do not eliminate all stress Use as a motivator for peak performance Stress can be useful, stimulating, and welcome Limit harmful effects Questions Guidelines Typed Answer thoroughly ~1 page, ~12 pt. font, ~ 1 inch margins What types of stress do you deal with in your life? Is it positive or negative? How does it impact your life? How do you deal with it? Be honest. (example, drinking) Do you feel it works? Why or why not?
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