Outline and evaluate research into the effects of life events on health outcomes:
There has been much research to suggest that stressful life events have a negative effect on health outcomes. In 1967 Holmes and Rahe created a Social Readjustment Rating Scale (SRRS) by examining the medical records of 5000 patients and compiling a list of 43 life events that tended to appear more frequently in time prior to periods of illness. They then asked a group of 100 participants to assign a number to each of the life events on how much readjustment they considered it would involve relative to marriage which had been given a value of 500.
The findings showed that Death of a Spouse would on average require double the readjustment than marriage would. In order to get a weighting for each life event the average of the numbers given to each event were divided by ten. The amount of stress experienced in a given period was measured in Life Change Units which was calculated by adding the mean values that had associations with the events the person had experienced during that time period.