Hans Selye - even though the rats were given harmless injections, they still became ill. He concluded that the stress from daily injections caused the illness. They showed the same 3 staged physiological response to stress. Selye called this the general adaptation syndrome. The first stage is the alarm stage, the stress response system is activated. Arousal levels increases ready for fight or flight response. If stress persists, the body goes through the resistance stage where your body starts to adapt to the situation so you seem normal. If stress still persist, you go through the last stage which is the exhaustion. This is when your body cannot cope with stress, your alarm signs return and you become ill.
Stress and illness
Kiecolt-Glaser - did a study on stress and immunity. He used punch biopsy to cause a small wound on the arms of 13 women who cared for family relative with alzheimer disease which is a very stressful responsibility. There was also a control group of 13 women. He found that the wound of those who cared for alzheimer patients took 9 days to heal than the control group. So Kiecolt glaser concluded that stress decrease the effectiveness of healing wounds. It weakens our immune response which eventually causes us to become ill.
Sweeney - did the same study by Kiecolt-Glaser and got the same results with dementia patients.
Cohen et al - He gathered 394 participants who were all healthy and measured their stress index score using a questionnaire which included their feelings about the stress and ability to cope. They were then give nasal drops and then the doctors tested them for any signs of illness. They found a correlation between the stress index score and illness. Those who had higher stress levels were more likely to get ill.
Riley et al - placed mice on a turntable rotating at 45 rpm for 10 mins per hour for 5 hours. They found that it induced stress and decreased lymphocyte.
Holmes and Rahe - believed that life changes cause stress. To test this assumption, they studied 5000 patient records and noting any life events prior to illness. They found 43 common life events and had 100 people to rate how much the change could affect someone’s life. The scores were called the LCU. The higher the score, the more stressed you are. They said that if you score 300 you are more likely to experience some kind of disease
Rahe et al - 2000 american navy seamen were asked to fill out a form before they set sail on a military duty which indicates any life event that had happened to them over the 6 months. The results showed that those with higher LCU scores were more likely to develop illness in over 7 months
Daily Hassles and Uplifts
Delongis et al - investigated the relationship between hassles and illness. he asked 100 people to fill out 4 questionnaires: hassles, uplifts, life events and health. There was a correlation in hassles and illness but no correlation for uplifts and life events.
Kanner et al - 100 adults filled out a questionnaire each month to state which hassles they experienced that month from a list of 117. They were asked to rate how severe it had been for them. This was repeated for 9 months. They found that the higher the score, the more likely illness occurred and they noticed that the uplifts reduced stress.
Marmot - did a study 7000 civil