Psychology Notes – April 19, 2007 Psychological Factors and Physical Illness Learned Helplessness - A point when people conclude

that unpleasant or aversive stimuli cannot be controlled. - A view of the world that becomes so ingrained that they cease trying to remedy the aversive circumstances. Hardiness - Hardiness – Personality characteristic associated with a lower rate of stressrelated illness. o Commitment o Challenge o Control - Social Support o A mutual network of caring, interested others The A’s and B’s of Coronary Heart Disease - Type A Behavior Pattern o Competitive o Show urgency about time o Aggressive o Driven quality at work o Hostile, verbally, and nonverbally - Type B Behavior Pattern o Cooperative o Less competitive o Not especially time oriented o Not usually aggressive, driven, or hostile Sense of Control - Locus of control – Your expectation of whether you can control the things that happen to you o Internal – those who believe they are responsible for what happens to them o External – those who believe they are victims of circumstances - Benefits of control o Difficult events are more tolerable if more predictable or controllable - Limits of Control o Trying to control the uncontrollable is a problem and a source of stress - Combination works best Coping with Stress - Coping o The efforts to control, reduce, or learn to tolerate the threats that lead to stress.

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Defense Mechanisms o Reactions that maintain a person’s sense of control and self-worth by distorting or denying the actual nature of the situation. o Emotional insulation  Cessation of emotional experience Problem-focused coping o Attempts to modify the stressful problem or source of the stress o Examples? Emotion-focused coping o Method of managing emotion in the face of stress by seeking to change the way they feel or perceive a problem o Examples? Example of coping (emotion-focused) o Prayer and meditation o Relaxation Training  Learning to alternately tense and relax muscles, lie or sit quietly, or mediate by clearing the mind;  Has beneficial effects by lowering stress hormones and enhancing immune function o Massage Therapy o Exercise Effective Cognitive Coping Methods (also emotion-focused): o Reappraising the situation o Learning from the experience o Making social comparisons o Cultivating a sense of humor

Psychological Disorders – Chapter 15 Module 48: Normal vs. Abnormal: Making the Distinction Defining Abnormality - Abnormality o A deviation from the average  Statistically-based approach o A deviation from the ideal  Majority standard o A sense of personal discomfort o The inability to function effectively  Societal demands o A legal concept Perspective on Abnormality - >>Review: Major Theoretical Perspectives in Psychology - Medical perspective o -> Physiological causes - Psychoanalytic perspective - -> Childhood conflicts over opposing wishes regarding sex and aggression. - Behavioral Perspective o -> learned response - Cognitive perspective o -> cognitions (people’s thoughts and beliefs) are central to a person’s abnormal behavior - Humanistic perspective o -> emphasizes the responsibility that people have for their own behavior - Socialcultural perspective o -> people’s behavior – both normal and abnormal – is shaped by the kind of family group, society, and culture Classifying Abnormal Behavior - Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 4th ed. (DSM-IV) - Standard system used in the US to diagnose and classify abnormal behavior devised. o Descriptive; doesn’t suggest causes - American Psychiatric Association - Ultilizes 5 axes to describe condition o Axis 1: Clinical Syndrome (e.g., schizophrenia; mood disorder) o Axis 5: Global Assessment of Functioning Anxiety Disorders: What does anxiety feel like? - Anxiety occurs without external justification and begins to affect a person’s daily functioning

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Phobic disorders o Intense, irrational fears of specific objects or situations o

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