Psychology Test 4
– Chapters 13, 14, 15, & 16
Chapter 13 (Stress, Coping, and Health)
The biopsychosocial model holds that physical illness is caused by a complex
interaction of biological, psychological, and sociocultural factors.
Health psychology is concerned with how psychosocial factors relate to the
promotion and maintenance of health and with the causation, prevention, and
treatment of illness.
Stress can be defined as any circumstance that threatens or are perceived to
threaten one’s wellbeing and that thereby tax ones coping abilities.
Studies conducted in the aftermath of natural disasters typically find elevated
rates of psychological problems and physical illness in the communities affected
by these disasters.
Primary appraisal is an initial evaluation of whether an event is (1) irrelevant to
you, (2) relevant but not threatening or (3) stressful.
Secondary appraisal, which is an evaluation of your coping resources and options
for dealing with the stress.
Therefore, your primary appraisal would determine whether you saw an
upcoming psychology exam as stressful. Your secondary appraisal would
determine how stressful the exam appeared.
Acute stressors are threatening events that have a relatively short duration and a
Chronic stressors are threatening events that have a relatively long duration and
no readily apparent time limit.
Frustration occurs in any situation in which the pursuit of some goal is thwarted.
Conflict occurs when two or more incompatible motivations or behavioral
impulses compete for expression.
In an approachapproach conflict, a choice must be made between two attractive
In an avoidanceavoidance conflict, a choice must be made between two
In an approachavoidance conflict, a choice must be made about whether to
pursue a single goal that has both attractive and unattractive aspects.
Life changes are any noticeable alterations in ones living circumstances that
Pressure involves expectations or demands that one behave in a certain way.
A large number of studies using the SRRS suggest that change is stressful.
Although this may be true, it is now clear that the SSRS is a measure of general
stress rather than just changerelated stress. Two kinds of pressure (to perform and
to conform) also appear to be stressful.
We can analyze persons reactions to stress at three levels: (1) emotional
responses, (2) physiological responses, and (3) behavioral responses. Emotional responses are a natural and normal part of life. Even unpleasant
emotions serve important purposes. Like physical pain, painful emotions can
serve as warnings that one needs to take action.
The fightorflight response is a physiological reaction to threat in which the
autonomic nervous system mobilizes the organism for attacking (fight) or fleeing
(flight) an enemy.
The general adaptation syndrome is a model of the body’s stress response,
consisting of three stages: alarm, resistance, and exhaustion.
(Brainbody pathways in stress. In times of stress, the brain sends signals along two
pathways. The pathway through the autonomic nervous system controls the release of
catecholamine hormones that help mobilize the body for action. The pathway through the
pituitary gland and the endocrine system controls the release of corticosteroid hormones
that increase energy and ward off tissue inflammation.)
Coping refers to active efforts to master, reduce, or tolerate the demands created
Learned helplessness is passive behaviour produced by exposure to unavoidable
Aggression is any behaviour hat is intended to hurt someone, either physically or
Freud theorized that behaving aggressively could get pentup emotion out of one’s
system and thus be adaptive. He coined the term catharsis to refer to this release
of emotional tension.
Internet addiction, which consists of spending an inordinate amount of time on the
Internet and inability to control online use.
Defense mechanisms are largely unconscious reactions that protect a person from
unpleasant emotions such as anxiety and guilt.
Constructive coping is referred to as relatively healthful efforts that people make
to deal with stressful events.
A consensus about the nature of constructive coping has emerged from the sizable
literature on stress management. Key theme in this literature include the
o Constructive coping involves confronting problems directly. It is task
relevant and action oriented. It entails a conscious effort to rationally
evaluate your options so that you can try to solve your problems.
o Constructive coping is based on reasonably realistic appraisals of your
stress and coping resources. A little selfdeception may sometimes be
adaptive, but excessive selfdeception and highly unrealistic negation
thinking are not.
o Construction coping involves learning to recognize, and in some cases
regulate, potentially disruption emotional reactions to stress.
Burnout involves physical and emotional exhaustion, cynicism, and a lowered
sense of selfefficacy that can be brought on gradually by chronic workrelated
stress. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) involves enduring psychological
disturbance attributed to the experience of a major traumatic event.
Resilience refers to successful adaptation to significant stress and trauma, as
evidenced by a lack of serious negative outcomes.
Stress can contribute to a host of common problems, such as poor academic
performance, insomnia, and sexual difficulties. Stress has also been related to the
development of various psychological disorders, including depression,
schizophrenia, anxiety disorders, and eating disorders. Research on the effects of
stress traditionally has concentrated on negative outcomes, but positive effects
may also occur and are currently the focus of some research.
Psychosomatic diseases were genuine physical ailments that were though to be
caused in part by stress and other psychological factors.
The type A personality includes three elements: (1) a strong competitive
orientation, (2) impatience and time urgency, and (3) anger and hostility.
The type B personality is marked by relatively relaxed, patient, easygoing,
The immune response is the body’s defensive reaction to invasion by bacteria,
viral agents, or other foreign substances.
Social stress refers to various types of aid and emotional sustenance provided
types of aid and emotional sustenance provided by members of one’s social
Optimism as a general tendency to expect good outcomes.
Acquired immune deficiency syndrome, a disorder in which the immune system is
gradually weakened and eventually disabled by the human immunodeficiency
People frequently display healthimpairing lifestyles. Smokers have much higher
mortality rates than nonsmokers because they are more vulnerable to a host of
diseases. Health risks decline reasonably quickly for people who give up
smoking, but quitting is difficult and relapse rates are high.
Poor nutritional habits have been linked to heart disease, hypertension, and
cancer, among other things. Lack of exercise elevates one’s risk for cardiovascular
diseases. Alcohol and drug use carry the immediate risk of overdose and elevate
the longterm risk of many diseases.
Aspects of behaviour influence one’s risk of AIDS, which is transmitted through
persontoperson contact involving the exchange of bodily fluids, primarily semen
and blood. Misconceptions about AIDS are common, and the people who hold
these misconceptions tend to fall into polarized camps, either overestimating or
underestimating their risk of infection.
Healthimpairing habits tend to develop gradually and often involve pleasant
activities. The risk may be easy to ignore because they lie in the distant future and
because people tend to underestimate risks that apply to them personally.
Why do people dawdle in the midst of a crisis? M. Robin DiMatteo (1991), a
leading expert on patient behaviour, mentions a number of reasons, noting that
people delay because they often (1) misinterpret and downplay the significance of
their symptoms, (2) fret about looking silly if the problem turns out to be nothing,
(3) worry about “bothering” their physician, (4) are reluctant to disrupt their plans (to go out to dinner, see a movie, and so forth), and (5) waste time on trivial
matters (such as taking a shower, gathering personal items, or packing clothes)
before going to a hospital emergency room.
Chapter 14 (Psychological Disorders)
The medical model proposes that it is useful to think of abnormal behaviour as a
Diagnosis involves distinguishing one illness from another. Etiology refers to the
apparent causation and developmental history of an illness. A prognosis is a
forecast about the probable course of an illness.
Axis I (Clinical Syndromes)
o Disorders usually first diagnosed in infancy, childhood, or adolescence:
This category includes disorders that arise before adolescence, such as
attention deficit disorders, autism, enuresis, and stuttering.
o Organic mental disorders: These disorders are temporary or permanent
dysfunctions of brain tissue caused by diseases or chemicals. Examples
are delirium, dementia, and amnesia.
o Substancerelated disorders: This category refers to the maladaptive use of
drugs and alcohol. This category requires an abnormal pattern of use, as
with alcohol abuse and cocaine dependence.
o Schizophrenia and other psychotic disorders: The schizophrenias are
characterized by psychotic symptoms (for example grossly disorganized
behaviour, delusions, and hallucinations) and by over six months of
behavioral deterioration. This category also includes delusional disorder
and schizoaffective disorder.
o Mood disorders: The cardinal feature is emotional disturbance. These
disorders include major depression, bipolar disorder, dysthymic disorder,
and cyclothymic disorder.
o Anxiety disorders: These disorders are characterized by physiological
signs of anxiety (for example, palpitations) and subjective feelings of
tension, apprehension or fear. Anxiety may be acute and focused (panic
disorder) or continual and diffuse (generalized anxiety disorder).
o Somatoform disorders: The disorders are dominated by somatic symptoms
that resemble physical illnesses. These symptoms cannot be fully
accounted for by organic damage. This category includes somatization and
conversion disorders and hypochondriasis.
o Dissociative disorders: these disorders all feature a sudden, temporary
alteration or dysfunction of memory, consciousness, and identity, as in
dissociative amnesia and dissociative identity disorders.
o Sexual and genderidentity disorders: There are three basic types of
disorders in this category: gender identity disorders (discomfort with
identity as male or female), paraphilias (preference for unusual acts to
achieve sexual arousal), and sexual dysfunctions (impairments in sexual
functioning). o Eating disorders: eating disorders are severe disturbances in eating
behaviour characterized by preoccupation with weight concerns and
unhealthy efforts to control weight. Examples include anorexia nervosa
and bulimia nervosa.
Axis II (Personality Disorders or Mental Retardation)
o Personality disorders are longstanding patterns of extreme, inflexible
personality traits that are deviant or maladaptive and lead to impaired
functioning or subjective distress. Mental retardation refers to subnormal
general mental ability accompanied by deficiencies in adaptive skills,
originating before age 18.
Axis III (General Medical Conditions)
o Physical disorders or conditions are recorded on this axis. Examples
include diabetes, arthritis, and hemophilia.
Axis IV (Psychosocial and Environmental Problems)
o Axis IV is for reporting psychosocial and environmental problems that
may affect the diagnosis, treatment, and prognosis of mental disorders
(Axes I and II). A psychosocial or environmental problem may be a
negative life event, an environmental difficulty or deficiency, a familial or
other interpersonal stress, an inadequacy of social support or personal
resources, or another problem that describes the context in which a
persons difficulties have developed.
Axis V (Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) Scale)
100 Superior functioning in a wide range of activities
90 Absent or minimal symptoms, good functioning in all areas
80 Symptoms transient and expectable reactions to psychosocial
70 Some mild symptoms or some difficulty in social, occupational, or
60 Moderate symptoms or difficulty in social, occupational, or school
50 Serious symptoms or impairment in social, occupational, or school
40 Some impairment in reality testing or communication or major
impairment in family relations, judgment, thinking, or mood
30 Behaviour considerably influenced by delusions or hallucinations,
serious impairment in communication or judgment, or inability to
function in almost all areas.
20 Some danger of hunting self or others, occasional failure to
maintain minimal personal hygiene, or gross impairment in
10 Persistent danger of severely hurting self or others
Comorbidity the coexistence of two or more disorders. Epidemiology – the study of the distribution of mental or physical disorders in a
Prevalence refers to the percentage of a population that exhibits a disorder during
a specified time period.
Anxiety disorders are a class of disorders marked by feelings of excessive
apprehension and anxiety.
A generalized anxiety disorder is marked by a chronic, high level of anxiety that
is not tied to any specific threat.
A phobia disorder is marked by a persistent and irrational fear of an object or
situation that presents no realistic danger.
A panic disorder is characterized by recurrent attacks of overwhelming anxiety
that usually occur suddenly and unexpectedly.
An obsessivecompulsive disorder (OCD) is marked by persistent, uncontrollable
intrusions of unwanted thoughts (obsessions) and urges to engage in senseless
A concordance rate indicated the percentage of twin pairs or other pairs of
relatives who exhibit the same disorder.
Dissociative disorders are a class of disorders in which people lose contact with
portions of their consciousness or memory, resulting in disruptions in their sense
Dissociative amnesia is a sudden loss of memory for important personal
information that is too extensive to be due to normal forgetting.
In dissociative fugue, peop