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Psychology Physiological

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Physiological Psychology Selye (1936, 1950) General Adaptation Syndrome 1) The Alarm Stage - When are body first perceives there's a problem. 'Fight or flight'. Heart rate increases, we breathe more quickly, our muscles tense. 2) The Resistance Stage - If our bodies are exposed for a long time, our bodies learn to adapt to the situation. 3) The Exhaustion Stage - After long term exposure to a stressful situation, our bodies cannot cope. We may develop illnesses as a result such as ulcers, high blood pressure, depression etc. These were called 'diseases of adaptation'. - It only offers one type of response to stress, and neglects that the reaction to stress can vary. The Hypothalamus The hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis is the following series of events after we perceive a stressor. 1) The evaluation of whether something is actually a stressor occurs in the cerebral cortex. 2) When we perceive that there is a stressor in the environment, these higher areas send signals to the hypothalamus which starts two simultaneous actions in the body: a) Signals are sent to the pituitary gland which releases ACTH into the bloodstream. This stimulates the adrenal cortex to release corticosteroids which helps us get energy by converting fat and protein. b) The Autonomic Nervous System is also activated. This stimulates the adrenal medulla to release adrenaline and noradrenalin into the blood stream. ...read more.


2) They then ranked the events from highest to lowest and called it the SRRS. 3) They then carried out a study to see how it worked. Criticisms 1) It can be to do with recall. If they can remember an event more clearly, they might rank it higher. 2) It does not separate positive and negative life events. Positive life events may actually be stressful but be positive in the end, whereas something like a funeral may have long term negative effects. 3) Long-term minor stressors are not considered. The Workplace ==> You are constantly being watched on your performance. ==> Job insecurity. ==> Overcrowding. ==> Organisational change. ==> Interpersonal conflicts. ==> Management. ==> Lack of control. ==> Being responsible for others. ==> Environment. Different Personalities You can split people into different groups. Types A's and Type B's. Type A's are competitive and ambitious. Type B's are non-competitive, relaxed and easy going. Comments on Friedman and Rosenman. 1) Personality types are a bit simplistic. Type C and Type D personalities were also identified. 2) It doesn't prove that personality characteristics can cause stress and illness. 3) The sample is quite limited. Culture Biological Studies - Cooper et al (1999) ==> The higher level of cardiovascular disorder that is found in African-Americans is due to their genes as it is more commonly found in this group and therefore higher levels of stress are likely to be found. ...read more.


Addictive No side effects Easy to prescribe. Voluntary and not evasive. Specialist equipment. Some say that the benefits of biofeedback can be gained from other methods and therefore it's unnecessary. Meichenbaum's Stress Inoculation Technique ==> Preparation for dealing with stress. ==> Coceptualisation: Identifies fears and concerns with therapists help. ==> Skill Acquisition and rehersal: Positive thinking and relaxation. ==> Application and Follow Through: Practicing skill with support in real life situation. Hardiness Training ==> Kabasser suggested that a strong and hardy person shows three Cs. Control over their lives, Commitment and Challenge. ==> Maddi introduced a training programme to increase hardiness arguing that the more hardy a person is, the easier they'll find it to cope with stress. Focusing, Relieving stressful encounters, Self improvement. 1) Psychological methods only suit a narrow band of people. 2) Research is based is based on white, middle class people and so isn't necessarily generalised to others. 3) Procedures are very lengthy and therefore require time and effort. 4) Some procedures are too complicated. Control over how we view stressors affects how stressed we get Self Instructions that can make us feel better Preparation Confronting the situation Reinforcing self statement What is the point in worrying? Take a deep breath That was not so bad after all. It's not the end of the world. I can only do one thing at a time. That worked. What's the worst that could happen I will focus on this task for now. I always knew I could do it. ...read more.

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