Emotional states and health
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Emotional States and Health. Mind and Body. Can the body affect the mind? Example? How about the mind affecting the body? Example? Two-way communication between mind and body. Psychosomatic Medicine . Psyche (mind) Soma (body) Butterflies in the stomach Anxious before giving speech

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Mind and body
Mind and Body

  • Can the body affect the mind?

  • Example?

  • How about the mind affecting the body?

  • Example?

  • Two-way communication between mind and body

Psychosomatic medicine
Psychosomatic Medicine

  • Psyche (mind)

  • Soma (body)

  • Butterflies in the stomach

  • Anxious before giving speech

  • Indigestion, nausea

  • Stress may contribute to getting an ulcer.

Reducing the effects of stress
Reducing the effects of stress

  • Stress is less harmful if

  • Have some control (even if just belief).

  • Predictable (“going to feel a little pinch”).

  • Know the duration.

  • Coping mechanism.

  • Some way to relieve stress.

  • Positive attitude.

  • Active participant in process.

Relieve stress
Relieve stress

  • Meditation

  • Listening to soothing music

  • Taking a quiet walk

  • Reduce stress

  • Eliminate butterflies

Affects on long term health
Affects on long-term health

  • Attitude towards illness can affect healing.

  • Thought, beliefs and emotions have major impact on physical health.

  • Link between mind and body is the immune system.

The immune system
The Immune System

  • Cells that protect the body against intruders such as viruses and bacteria.

  • Like a police force

    • Too weak and criminals (viruses etc.) run wild

      • Ex: Opportunistic diseases seen with HIV-AIDS

  • Too strong and it attacks law-abiding citizens:

    • The body’s own cells (Autoimmune disease)

      • Ex. Rheumatoid arthritis

What is emotion
What is Emotion?

Internal conscious states that we infer in ourselves and others.

  • Emotions are private experiences.

  • We use operational definitions because we cannot actually see feelings.

  • We infer observable behavior associated with emotion.

Four components of emotion
Four components of Emotion

Significant life event

Feeling component
Feeling component

  • Emotions are subjective feelings

  • Make us feel in a particular way.

  • Anger or joy.

  • Meaning and personal significance.

  • Vary in intensity and quality.

  • Rooted in mental processes (labeling).

Bodily arousal
Bodily Arousal

  • Biological activation.

  • Autonomic and hormonal systems.

  • Prepare and activate adaptive coping behavior during emotion.

  • Body prepared for action.

  • Alert posture, clenched fists.

Purposive component
Purposive component

  • Give emotion its goal-directed force.

  • Motivation to take action.

  • Cope with emotion-causing circumstances.

  • Why people benefit from emotions.

  • Social and evolutionary advantage.

Social expressive component
Social-Expressive component

  • Emotion’s communicative aspect.

  • Postures, gestures, vocalizations, facial expressions make our emotions public.

  • Verbal and nonverbal communication.

  • Helps us interpret the situation.

  • How person reacts to event.

Emotions read in the face
Emotions read in the face

The Japanese Female Facial Expression (JAFFE) Database

Aspect of emotional intelligence
Aspect of Emotional Intelligence

  • Peter Salovey (Yale)

  • John Mayer (U of NH)

  • Four branch ability model of emotional intelligence

  • Mayer-Salovey-Caruso Emotional Intelligence Test


Identifying emotions branch 1
Identifying Emotions (Branch 1)

  • Skills needed to perceive and express feelings.

  • Recognizing facial expressions.

  • Non-verbal communication.

  • Tell when someone is being authentic.

  • Express accurate emotions for situation.

  • Foundation for other branches.

Facilitating emotions branch 2
Facilitating Emotions (Branch 2)

  • Using emotions to facilitate thinking.

  • Improve problem solving and boost creativity.

  • Emotional component to motivation.

  • “Care enough to send the very best.”

  • Using emotion to help make decisions.

Facilitation msceit
Facilitation (MSCEIT)

What mood(s) might be helpful to feel when meeting in-laws for the very first time?

                Not Useful              Usefula) Tension                       1      2      3      4      5

b) Surprise                     1      2      3      4      5

c) Joy                               1      2      3      4      5

Understanding emotions branch 3
Understanding emotions (Branch 3)

  • Understanding complex and conflicting emotions.

  • Emotions and behavioral consequences.

  • Read a situation and respond correctly.

  • Some emotional responses are maladaptive.

  • Jealousy and envy are destructive.

Understanding emotions msceit
Understanding Emotions (MSCEIT)

Tom felt anxious, and became a bit stressed when he thought about all the work he needed to do. When his supervisor brought him an additional project, he felt ____.  (Select the best choice.)

a) Overwhelmed

b) Depressed

c) Ashamed

d) Self Conscious

e) Jittery

Managing emotions branch 4
Managing emotions (Branch 4)

  • Developing mood regulation skills.

  • Productive ways to change mood.

  • Avoid over and under regulation.

  • Seek natural means rather than alcohol, tobacco or other drugs.

  • Stress coping strategies.

  • Use optimistic explanatory style.

Managing emotions branch 41
Managing Emotions (Branch 4)

Debbie just came back from vacation. She was feeling peaceful and content.  How well would each action preserve her mood?

Action 1: She started to make a list of things at home that she needed to do.

Very Ineffective..1.....2.....3.....4.....5..Very Effective

Action 2: She began thinking about where and when she would go on her next vacation.

Very Ineffective..1.....2.....3.....4.....5..Very Effective

Action 3: She decided it was best to ignore the feeling since it wouldn't last anyway.

Very Ineffective..1.....2.....3.....4.....5..Very Effective

Emotional states and physical health

Emotional States and Physical Health

Salovey et at

American Psychologist (1/2000)

Healing through laughter
Healing through laughter

  • Norman Cousins

  • Anatomy of an Illness (1979)

  • Life-threatening inflammatory disease

  • Cartoons and Marx Brothers

  • 10 mins of laughing gave him 2 hrs of pain-free sleep

  • Laughter reduced inflammation

  • Healing power of positive mood

Emotional states and immunity
Emotional states and immunity

  • Negative emotional states associated with unhealthy physical states.

  • Positive emotional states associated with healthier states.

  • Cardiovascular and immune systems.

  • S-IgA = secretory immunoglobulin A

  • First line of defense in the immune system

S iga levels and emotion
S-IgA levels and emotion

  • Increased occurrence of desirable events predicts higher S-IgA.

  • Positive moods boost the immune system.

  • Negative moods lower S-IgA levels.

  • Undesirable events suppress immune system.

  • Negative moods increase susceptibility to illness.

Manipulating emotion
Manipulating Emotion

  • Healthy college students watching videos.

  • Humorous video enhanced immune function ( S-IgA)

  • Sad video suppressed immune function ( S-IgA)

  • Not clear how long these changes persist.

  • Contribute to illness.

Coping styles and illness
Coping styles and illness

  • People dealing with severe stressors more susceptible to illness.

  • Negative emotional states reduce immune function.

  • Coping styles could aid healing.

  • Pennebaker: helping people process and confront traumatic life events improves health.

  • Talk about illness, release pent-up negative emotions.

Emotion and environment
Emotion and environment

  • Positive emotional states signal a safe environment.

  • Negative states signal an alert.

  • Something is wrong and must be corrected.

  • Function of pain.

  • It hurts; get help.

Role in seeking help
Role in seeking help

  • Some believe that:

  • Happy people less likely to recognize signs of distress and less likely to get help.

  • Unhappy people more vigilant and seek help.

  • Better to be pessimistic?

Processing health information
Processing health information

  • Other evidence that:

  • Positive outlook may make it easier to process threatening information (diagnosis).

  • Seek help.

  • Negative outlook may cause a person not recognize new symptoms as threatening.

  • Not seek help.

Optimistic outlook
Optimistic outlook

  • Positive emotional states provide resilience.

  • Strength to confront illness.

  • Personal resources to seek solutions.

  • Creativity in thought and action.

  • Focus on and plan for future outcomes.

  • Belief that you will get well.

  • Do what you can to support recovery.

Healthy heart surgery
Healthy heart surgery

  • Men undergoing cardiac bypass surgery.

  • Optimistic men better able to focus on postoperative goals.

  • 5 years post surgery, optimists had healthier habits.

  • Diet and exercise programs

  • Scheier et al. (1989)

Role of health care worker
Role of health care worker

  • One who inspires hope in others.

  • Freud: patient’s expectations “colored by hope and faith and an effective force in all our attempts at treatment and cure.”

  • Positive mood comes from a renewal of hope.

Social support
Social Support

  • With social support, observe:

  • Lower mortality

  • More resistant to disease.

  • Lower incidence of heart disease.

  • Faster recovery from surgery.

  • Decreased levels of stress.

  • Improved coping with illness.

Affect on health
Affect on Health

  • 1. Buffering hypothesis:

  • Social support buffers individual from stressful life event. Only when needed.

  • 2. Direct effect:

  • Social support promotes well-being at all times. Not just under stress.

  • Both are possible, depending on the nature of the stressor.

Role of social support
Role of Social Support

  • Mediated by emotional experience.

  • Know that help will be provided if needed.

  • Less likely to feel lonely and depressed.

  • Positive outlook on life more likely to get social support.

  • Develop and maintain social network.


  • Also plays a role in wellness and recovery from illness.

  • A topic for later discussion.