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STRESS…… Objectives: By the end of the session the students will be able to- Define Stress Recognise physiological signs of stress Theories of stress - PowerPoint PPT Presentation


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STRESS…… Objectives: By the end of the session the students will be able to- Define Stress Recognise physiological signs of stress Theories of stress. Physiological Psychology. Seeks to explain behaviour in terms of body systems.

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STRESS…… Objectives: By the end of the session the students will be able to- Define Stress Recognise physiological signs of stress Theories of stress

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  • STRESS……

  • Objectives:By the end of the session the students will be able to-

  • Define Stress

  • Recognise physiological signs of stress

  • Theories of stress


  • Physiological Psychology.

  • Seeks to explain behaviour in terms of body systems.

  • The key assumption is that ultimately all behaviour can be reduced to and explained at the level of physiological systems.

  • Examples: Central & Autonomic nervous system, & hormones.


  • What is stress?????

  • “A pattern of negative physiological states & psychological responses occurring in situations where people perceive threats to their well being which they may be unable to meet.”

  • R.Lazurus & S. Folkman (1984)


  • Stress cont…

  • Stress is a nonspecific response of the body to any demand made on it

    • Eustress: pleasant, desirable stress as in the stress associated with exercise

    • Distress: is unpleasant stress as in illness

  • Stressors are stimuli that cause stress

    • Stressors can be major (loss of a parent) or can be minor (parking your car)

  • Body eventually fails when subjected to chronic stress


  • What is stress cont….

  • There needs to event called a stressor e.g. exam,unemployment, long term illness.

  • When we feel uncomfortable there is a set of changes which are measured for signs of stress.


  • Physiological signs of stress. (GAS)

  • Seyle (1976) Animals react similarly to humans in variety of situations.

  • He developed theory called General Adaptation Syndrome

  • Defined as a non-specific physiological response to a variety of stressful stimulus.


  • General Adaptation syndromecont….

  • Stage 1: Alarm Reaction

  • Perceived threat, drop in BP, muscle tension, the body prepares for confrontation.

  • Stage 2: Resistance

  • Chemical production

  • Body keeps up defences, but becomes vulnerable.

  • Stage 3 : Exhaustion

  • Body begins to manifest signs of prolonged hormone secretion, in need of recovery e.g low blood sugar, kidney damage, low hormone levels.


  • Evaluation of GAS model

  • Allows good insight into causes of stress related illness.

  • But still does not answer the question of why we perceive some events as threatening.

  • Overall what is needed is the person to be involved in the equation.


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