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Chapter 9

Health and Aging reading notes chapter 9

Health Studies
Course Code
Anna Walsh

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Health, Illness, and Optimal Aging
Chapter 9
Personality Processes and Disease
-Hippocrates developed a system of medicine based on the belief that substances called humours influenced
personality and health; 4 humours- blood, melancholy (black bile), choler (yellow bile), and phlegm
-bile=depression and degenerative disease
-choler= anger and bitter
-blood=ruddy, sanguine
-health psychology orientated toward basic research whereas behavioural medicine focuses on clinical approach
-bidirectional refers to a reciprocal relationship between physical and psychological health
-transactional refers to continuous process of change among multiple variables
-personality process: physiological factors studied in connection with health and gaining
-term personality processes allows for a greater flexibility in the review of the material
-relationship between hostility and CHD
-Type A personality: easily aroused hostility, time urgency, explosive speech patterns
-two way to access personality; 1) ask questions slowly and challenge patients answers 2) self report questionnaires
-men higher in hostility are 2.5x more likely to get CHD
-this relationship is stronger for men than women
-people high in hostility exhibit greater cardiovascular reactivity to stress; increases in blood pressure and elevated
heart pressure
-hostility levels seem to be highest in adolescence
-men higher in anxiety are 2.5x more likely to get CHD, 4.5x risk of sudden cardiac death
-emotional distress is associated with the release of catecholamines, which stimulates the heart
-heart rate variability indicates a lack of regulation of the heartbeat and thus it can overreact to stimulation
-strongest associate between health and negative affect
-relationship between bereavement and mortality was stronger among the middle aged than among older adult
-depression symptoms are unstable
-depression linked to atherogenesis
-depressed people are more likely to have bad habits
-depression predicts subsequent arrhythmias because it decreases heart rate variability or responsiveness
-very weak correlation with cancer
-personality C has high correlation with cancer; women who suppressed emotional expression
Psychological Protective Factors and Health
Control and Self-Efficacy
-individuals given control and responsibility were more healthy than those who werent in nursing homes
-Karasek and Theorell hypothesized that there is an interaction effect between control and responsibility in
occupational settings eg. Secretaries have a lot of stress cause they don’t have control but lots of responsibility
-individuals with lower SES who had strong sense of control had self-rated health as high as more prosperous SES
groups, but those with low sense of control
-feelings of control change with age
-primary control: referring to control over the environment
-secondary control: referring to control over ones reactions to it
-one permutation of the construct of control has been mindfulness
-mindfulness: the process of becoming aware of the environment and ones reactions to it as well as one’s internal
states, ability to make new categories being open to new information, and being able to take a new perspective
-Langer took adults to a camp where they were given responsibility
-(another experiment)Langer also randomly assigned individuals to 1 of 4 groups (meditation, mindfulness training,
relaxation, and a control group). Meditation and mindfulness group were most healthy after
- has 3 dimensions: internality, stability, and globality
-Internality: whether one attributes the cause of an event to an internal or external source
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