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Stress Management Part 2. Before. After. NJ AIHA Local Section Meeting November 16, 2006 . Review. Stress: is the automatic biochemical state that results when the body is required to respond to a physical or psychological demand.

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stress management part 2

Stress ManagementPart 2



NJ AIHA Local Section Meeting

November 16, 2006

  • Stress:
    • is the automatic biochemical state that results when the body is required to respond to a physical or psychological demand.
    • may be caused by pleasant or unpleasant perceptions.
    • may have positive or negative effects. (Eustress, Neustress, Distress)



The stress response is driven by hormones (chemicals) flowing throughout the body. They control blood flow, heart rate, glucose levels, and the overall readiness of the body for physical action. Stress hormones are produced automatically by the endocrine system in response to the level of urgency the brain perceives.





example adrenaline epinephrine


  • Epinephrine(an intravenous drug)
  • Stimulates cardiac action during cardiac arrest.
  • Causes vasoconstriction for treating anaphylactic shock and sepsis.
  • Acts as a bronchodilator for treating acute asthma.
  • Adverse side effects include:
  • Palpitations
  • Tachycardia
  • Arrhythmia
  • Anxiety
  • Headache
  • Tremor


chemical half life

Ct = C0e-lt



Chemical Half Life

The instantaneous concentration (Ct) of a chemical such as adrenaline in the body follows the mathematical laws of exponential decay. The half life of adrenaline is about 2 minutes.


The brain is composed of three basic sections; i.e., the triune concept. Brain researchers believe that the three parts evolved independently over the course of human development. The most ancient structure, the R-complex is common among all vertebrates today and controls basic body functions. The limbic and neomammalian sections appeared more recently in evolution and control higher functions.


The Human Brain

It Is What it Is!

Research also shows that the three segments are inter- connected but operate within pre-programmed levels of independence. And for some functions, the cerebrum simplycannot override neurological commands originating in these lower segments. So, when crisis conditions prevail, these systems operate almost autonomously, directing the basic human functioning toward survival-based reaction.

emotions of the stress response
Emotions of the Stress Response
  • The two emotions specifically associated with the stress response are:
    • fear and
    • anger
  • The science of EvolutionaryPsychology hypothesizes thatstress emotions are survivalmechanisms which evolvedmuch the same way that ourphysical characteristics did. Their presence in any prehistoric individual ensured a longer life expectancy and greater reproductive success.
what is fear
What is Fear?
  • Fear is the unpleasant feeling that arises as a normal response to realistic danger.
  • Isaac Marks, Psychologist (1987):Fear is a vital evolutionary legacy that leads an organism to avoid threat, and has obvious survival value. It is an emotion produced by the perception of present or impending danger and is normal in appropriate situations. Without fear, few would survive long under natural conditions.
excessive fear the adaptive conservatism hypothesis
Excessive FearThe Adaptive Conservatism Hypothesis
  • Isaac Marks also believed that the excessive anxiety that some people experience may be an evolved tendency to be extra cautious.
  • In the terms of our ancestors’ genetic survival, the cost of mistakenly assuming that something was safe, when in fact it was dangerous, would have been much higher than the cost of erring on the safe side and assuming it was dangerous, even if it was not.
what is anger

Don’t Have a Cow Man!

What is Anger?
  • Anger is also hypothesized to have evolved as a solution to basic survival needs. Anger focuses attention on a perceived threat and prepares an individual to mount a defensive (or aggressive) physical response. Potential threats may include: one’s personal safety, safety of family, and competition for resources.
regarding resources

Self Actualization

Esteem and Respect

Love and Belonging

Safety: Shelter and Security

Physiological: Food and Water

Regarding Resources

Abraham Maslow’s theory of motivation suggests that humans operate on a hierarchy of needs that influences their behavior.

excessive anger
Excessive Anger?
  • An Hypothesis
  • Our society today is fast-paced and most of our primary needs have been satisfied. Consistent with Maslow’s hierarchy, we may have become preoccupied with satisfying the needs of:
    • Self Actualization
    • Esteem and Respect
stress prone personality types
Stress-Prone Personality Types
  • Type A
    • Excessive time urgency
    • Domineering
    • Hostile
    • Hyperaggressive
  • Codependent
    • Insecure
    • Self sacrificing
    • Perfectionists
  • Helpless-hopeless
  • Type R
    • sensation seeker
  • Hardy