Relationship between stress and illness

The Relationship Between Health and Stress

relationship between stress and illness

The Relationship Between Health and Stress. The relationship between the number of stressful life events and the incidence of illnesses. Abstract. Our research. "Stress doesn't only make us feel awful emotionally," says Jay Winner, MD, author of Take the Stress Out of Your Life and director of the Stress. The relationship between stress and illness is complex. The susceptibility to stress varies from person to person. Among the factors that influenced the.

The correlation coefficient Pearson, Spearman, phi,? This positive variable indicates that as stress increases, health increases Wrong Conclusion, illness increases not health. However, the farther the distance of the coefficient from 0.

We predicted a strong relationship between these two variables, but only a slight one was observed. Yet, it can support some of the previous research demonstrating a relationship between health and stress since there was positive correlation. It did not altogether fail to show a relationship, and does not coincide with past research designed to challenge the correlation.

First Justification Reliability is the extent to which any measuring device, such as a psychological test, yields the same result each time it is applied to the same quantity.

relationship between stress and illness

We did not test for this consistency since each questionnaire was administered to each participant only once. Validity is the extent to which a test actually measures what it is intended to measure. Our experiment demonstrated a degree of content validity because the items on each questionnaire were related in a straightforward manner to health or stress. How did you measure the content validity. Experiments similar to ours have been done which demonstrate content validity.

Reference Another explanation for the results of our experiment could be that there was a great deal of experimental error in the measurement. One type of error may be found in the test itself.

Second Justification Certain items on the questionnaire could be considered too broad, such as dental problems, thus affecting the participant's response to that particular item. Third Justification Other age groups could have been observed. Fourth Justification Also, the participants could have been chosen more carefully to ensure a more equal distribution of males and females.

Fifth Justification The attitude of the experimenter towards the experiment may have affected the participant's responses. Another In other words possibility is that the experimenter may have tried to influence the participants to respond in a manner that is consistent with the predictions of the experiment HOW? Lastly thereforethe participants may have contributed as a source of error. Sixth Justification The participants may not have taken the experiment seriously and responded randomly to the items Why?

They may have exhibited dishonesty in their responses due to the personal nature of some of the items which items how and when did you realize this? The study of health and stress can be applied to everyday life. We encounter stress on a daily basis, and unless we live a charmed life, we often suffer from some form of illness. In learning more about the relationship between health and stress we can discover ways to improve our general well-being, and live healthier, less stressful lives.

It is quite likely that future research it this area will continue because of the great benefits it may contribute to people in today's stressful life. Your Suggestions References Cohen, S. Negative life events, perceived stress, negative affect, and susceptibility to the common cold.

Journal of Personality and Social Psychology, 64, Stress and the immune system. The social readjustment rating scale. Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 11, Stress, anxiety, depression, and physical illness in college students. Journal of Genetic Psychology, The effects of academic stress on health behaviors in young adults.

However, inDeFrank established that the high blood pressure was because of an increase in alcohol consumption among the air traffic controllers. Their health was not just caused by the biological affect of years of stress, but on the behavioral response of drinking because of their increased stress. Stress may not have directly caused the high blood pressure, but it did cause a change in behavioral responses within the air traffic controllers.

It is important to remember that not all stress is bad for the body or mind. Has stress at school or work ever prompted you to achieve something worthwhile and helped you develop new skills?

BBC - Future - Stress and illness: The decades-long search for a link

Many Psychologists have found that not all stress is bad. Stress can help motivation, problem solving, and the fighting of infections. Some Cancer survivors emerge with a newfound spirituality or stronger self-esteem because of the stress they endured and then conquered. A personal battle with long-term health problems can be very difficult and stressful, however some individuals start to develop a new self worth and new dreams and desires because of it.

When someone survives an illness or life-threatening situation more times than not a person will take life less serious and live everyday thankful to be alive. This attitude is what helps most survivors deal with the situation that has arose in their lives. It was this positive stress outcome that helped mold my life into what it is today.


My first semester at college I became very ill with what I believed to be a horrible stomach bug. As the days and then weeks passed and symptoms became worse, I began seeing doctors and specialists daily.

The experiment revealed that prolonged stress is correlated not only with the likelihood of developing a cold, but also with higher levels of glucocorticoid resistance. In other words, the people whose receptors responded inadequately to the cortisol in their blood were the ones who got the colds. In a second study, Cohen had made direct measurements of glucocorticoid resistance in a group of 79 subjects before exposure to cold viruses.

The findings of both studies point in the same direction. What counts is not the amount of cortisol circulating in the body, but how much our cells react to it. So what of more serious disease?

The real importance of the work, says Cohen, lies in its relevance to the many other conditions in which inflammation is a factor.

Cardiovascular disease, asthma, autoimmune disease, diabetes…The regulation of inflammation plays a big role in the progression of all of them. And Phil Evans too joins the chorus of acceptance. But when it comes to the health effects of their status in a hierarchy, the forces at work are more subtle. One possibility is that people fare less well when they find themselves unable to determine their own actions and make their own choices.

The crossover with stress is obvious. Professor Steptoe is investigating the cortisol biochemistry associated with their predicament, especially as it affects their risk of heart disease. Definitive proof Cohen readily admits that proving his hypothesis will be difficult, at least for now. One of the classic methods of studying a biological system in animal models is to disturb it in some way — stimulate it or inhibit it, for example — and see what happens.

While animal work showing that chronic stress affects glucocorticoid resistance is persuasive, it is not definitive.

Stress and illness: The decades-long search for a link

He knows, for example, of another group of researchers planning a study of the role of glucocorticoid resistance in asthma.

There is always the possibility that the definitive experiment will always remain out of reach, in which case stress researchers might find themselves in the position of doctors trying to demonstrate a causal link between lung cancer and smoking.

Unable to do the definitive experiment they have had to rely on an accumulation of observational studies, animal experiments, and studies of the physiological mechanisms most likely involved.

relationship between stress and illness

After thirty years of exploration, Cohen says he remains undaunted by the prospect that definitive experiment might elude him, and he laughs off any suggestion of frustration.