PSY 1102 Chapter Notes - Chapter 12: Coronary Artery Disease, Pituitary Gland, Immune System

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28 Apr 2016

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Chapter 12 P.486-511
Emotions, Stress , and Health last half
Health Psychology
A subfield in psychology that gives psychology’s contribution to behavioral medicine
Attempts to study how stress, healthy, and unhealthy behaviors influence health and illness
Both psychologists and physicians helped create behavior medicine
Health psychology uses knowledge from both behavioral and medical knowledge
Stress and Heath
Stress is how we perceive and respond to events, known as stressors; threat or challenge
Stress is highest in young adults and drops as you become senior
How we response to challenges or distractions influences our mood
Ben Carpenter, wheelchair wide rile
Short stress = good, especially as a challenge- stimulates brain, mobilizes immune system; heals
wounds and illnesses
Short stress arouses us and motivates us to conquer problems
Long Term Stress
Bad, leads to heart problems and death for many, especially when losing a job
Posttraumatic stress is an example of this, sometimes cause from prolonged abuse; increases risk
of chronic disease
These cause stress, such as losing money, gives off a stress reaction
3 main types of stress reactions, catastrophes, big life changes, and daily life stresses
Are unpredictable, large scale events that we all are threatened by, wars, famines, disease
Can lead to problems for everyone, such as 9/11 and sleeping pill sales
Significant life changes
Happy or sad events can cause stress, those recently divorced, fired, widowed more vulnerable to
disease- death risks doubles in week after partner death
Moving to another country is a twofold stress event. Newcomers have culture shock, climate
change, and are in a new place
Experiences a cluster of crises, puts one at even greater risk.
Daily hassles
Doesn’t remake our lives, these small stresses add up and take a toll on us, often relate to money,
work, and the economy
Causes cardiovascular problems, heart failure
Thinking you’re disliked is a daily stressor many face
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The Stress Response System
Walter Cannon confirmed the stress response part of our mind-body systems
Arousing and dangerous situations sees an outpouring of stress hormones such as
Epinephrine- “Hands out guns”
Norepinephrine- Comes from adrenal glands and increases heart rate and respiration
Takes blood away from digestion tract, puts in skeletal muscles, dulls pain, releases sugar,
prepares for adaptive “Fight or Flight”
The Cerebral Cortex (hypothalamus and Pituitary Gland) are on the outer part of the adrenal
glands, these secrete glucocorticoid stress hormones like cortisol to draw a blueprint of what we
need to overcome situation
These two systems work at different speeds and is also found in animals
General Adaptation syndrome-GAS
Selye believed the body’s adaptive response to stress happened in 3 phases
Believed these were automatic responses
Alarm, resistance, Exhaustion
1- Alarm reaction, sympathetic nerves activated, heart rate zooms, blood gets diverted, feel
faintness of shock, mobilizes resources for fight
2- Resistance, temperature, blood pressure, breathing all get high as adrenal glands pump
hormones to blood. We are fully engaged with all body resources to meet the challenge
3-Exhaustion, run out of reserves and are more vulnerable to death, collapse, illness here
The body copes well with temporary stress but long term is negative
New neurons from stress slow and neural circuits degenerate, such as telomere shortening
Tend and befriend
When stressed, women often provide support to others, tend to needs
They bond with and seek support from others as well, known as befriending
Men more likely to use alcohol or drugs when stressed, maybe because oxytocin, the stress
moderating hormone with pair bonding
Oxytocin is also released by cuddling, massages, and breast feeding, shows gender differences as
women brains are more active in oxytocin and feel more empathy
Stress & Illness
Psychosomatic is used to describe psychologically caused physical symptoms, that are unreal
merely in the mind
A psychophysiological illness is literally a “mind-body” illness, such as stress related to physical
illness like headaches or hypertension
Psychoneuroimmunology is the study of how psychological, neural, and endocrine processes
combine to affect immune system and health; such as mind-body interactions.
Ours Thoughts and feelings (psych), influence our brain (neuro), which influences endocrine
hormones, which affects immune system; ology=interactions
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Immune system
Our surveillance system that keeps us healthy by isolating and destroying bacteria
We have four types of cells active in this system-2 reds, 2 whites-
The white cells are known as lymphocytes and we have B and T lymphos
B lympho is in bone marrow and releases antibodies to fight off bacteria
T lympho is in the thymus and other lymphatic tissue, it attacks cancer cells, viruses, foreign
The Red Blood cells are macrophages, which eat bacteria to clean worn out cells, and Natural
Killer cells, they kill diseased cells that need to be cleared
Age, genetic, nutrition, body temp, stress all influence how well these work.
Poor immune function
Often response from strong stress, our body attacks its own tissue causing a bad reaction
By not dealing with this, a dormant herpes virus or cancer can multiply
When the brain constantly secretes stress hormones, disease fighting lymphocytes lessen;
stressed = slower healing wounds
Women are immunologically stronger then men and are less likely to get infections, however,
this makes them more vulnerable to self-attack diseases, like lupus or MS
Stressed are more likely to get cold, major infections, takes energy to remain immune, focus this
on stress, can’t function
This immune suppression is seen in monkeys with new roommates or dogs who get shocked
Stress and Aids
AIDS-Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome, is caused by HIV (Human Immunodeficiency
Virus)- Difficulty Fighting off Disease
This is an immune disorder that kills slowly and is more lethal to people as people can spread it
by not being aware they have it
Kills more people than combat in war, 4th leader killer in the world
Here, more common in men, in Africa, more common in women
Stress makes people with aids even more vulnerable to disease because the present immune
Reducing stress makes those with aids more likely to control disease, however, drugs or
prevention are far better methods
Stress and Cancer
Stress does not directly create caner, but weakens immune systems ability to fight off cancer and
multiple malignant cells
Greater risk of cancer within depression or workplace stress, seen in colon cancer, others find no
link; such as holocaust survivors
Patients who self-blame make cancer worse and accept the death
Eliminating stress would not eliminate these diseases
Stress and Heart Disease
Stress more linked to coronary heart disease, NA leading cause of death
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