Chapter 6-Outline

Chapter 6-Outline - 4/22/2008 Chapter 6 - Stress Disorders...

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5/13/2009 Chapter 6 — Stress Disorders DSM does not identify stress disorders as a category of itself; they are lumped in with anxiety…however they have an identifiable source. Stress, Coping, and the Anxiety Response o The state of stress has two components: 0. Stressor : event creating demands 1. Stress response : reactions to the demands- how you respond 0. Influenced by how we appraise (a) the event, and (b) our capacity to react to the event effectively o People who sense that they have the ability and resources to cope are more likely to take stressors in stride, less likely to develop psychological or physical disorders. o People who experience a large number of stressful events are particularly vulnerable to the onset of anxiety disorders. • People who have had a stress disorder or anxiety are more likely to have another episode. Stress and Arousal: The Fight-or-Flight Response When the human body is under stress, the following physical responses occur caused by the Sympathetic Nervous System: Heart rate increases Blood pressure increases Breathing becomes shallow Adrenaline, Cortisol and other stress hormones are released into the blood stream Muscles tense Blood flows away from periphery and is shunted to heart, lungs and muscles Digestion shuts down The body reacts to stress with these physical responses that are meant to prepare us for “fight” or “flight” We inherited this response from our ancestors, who needed it to survive in the face of physical danger. When a saber tooth tiger jumped out at them, they had to react quickly or die. Among other things, their hearts pumped blood faster to their muscles enabling them to strike harder or run faster than they normally would. But now, although you have the same physical response, your world seldom requires or even permits you to fight or run. For example, we often can’t yell at, hit, or run away from the source of our stress. The physical response is turned on, but it doesn’t benefit you in the same way. You don’t have an appropriate outlet or release valve for the stress. Page 1 of 5
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5/13/2009 Not all stress is bad – the natural stress response can help you react quickly to protect yourself or it can give you a charge so that you think more quickly and clearly. The adrenaline that is pumped into your blood stream can help you swerve out of the path of an oncoming car, or it can help you fight back in the face of a physical attack. But when the adrenaline continues to
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Chapter 6-Outline - 4/22/2008 Chapter 6 - Stress Disorders...

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