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Stress-Class Notes.doc

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Ayesha Khan

Stress & Health, 8 March 2012 • What is Stress? o Defining Stress  Psychological/cognitive components • Cognitive appraisal (Lazarus & Folkman, 1984) o Primary appraisal (irrelevant, good, stressful)  Harm  Threat  Challenge o Secondary appraisal  Coping assessment • Stress: Mind-Body Connection o Does cognitive appraisal impact physiology?  Example study: psychological health responses to 9/11 terrorist attacks  N: 2729 (no. of population)  9-14 days post attacks and follow up 1,2,3 years  Outcome measures= physician diagnosed diseases  Able to generalize findings  Findings: • Acute stress reactions to 9/11 predicted: • A 53% increased incidence of cardiovascular diseases ailments across the following 3 years (p>.001) • Found that the location didn’t matter, people in Ohio had stressful effects, didn’t have to be in New York City o Limbic System  Cognitive appraisal triggers a physiological reaction in your brain  Main components: • Amygdala (fear) • Cingulate gyrus • Fornix • Hippocampus (memory, recognition, stores episodic memory) • Hypothalamus  Amygdala synthesizes emotion and senses • Stress: Physiological Components o Threat appraisal triggers acute activation in your body o Catecholamine’s  hypothalamus  pituitary gland  adrenal gland  cortisol  immune activation o Cortisol helps regulate the glucose production (when needed to run away from a situation, run far or calm you down) o If you don’t have the right amount of cortisol to elevate your immune system, you have autoimmune diseases* • Stress: Acute Activation o You’re not digesting, or feeling your body, if you’re a younger kid you won’t be able to grow enough o Huge dedication of physiological resources o Imbalance between: sympathetic nervous system (fight or flight) and parasympathetic system • Stress: CHRONIC activation o Chronic or extreme stress can result in chronic stress response activation o Extreme stress  Combat, assault, child abuse, serious motor vehicle accidents o Epigentic change- animals  Poor mothering = brain grows more sensitive to stress across lifespan o Epigentic change- humans  Loneliness & isolation = disregulated expression of genes regulating pro and anti-inflammatory cytokines o Anxiety and cardiovascular disease o ATTICA Study  Greek adults (N=853)  Predictor: Anxiety levels • Measured by the State Trait Anxiety Inventory (STAI)  Outcomes: cardiovascular and immune markers o STAI positively correlated with  C-reactive protein  Tumor necrosis factor  Interleukin-6  Homocysteine  Fibrinogen o Metabolic effects  (Fight or flight) Catecolamines (e.g. epinephrine) • Release glucose into blood stream for energy to increase HR and breathing = higher blood sugar • Impair pancreas from secreting insulin= insulin resistance= diabetes  (HPA) Cortisol (stress hormone) • Increases appetite •
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