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The Body's Response to Stress

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Please provide a description of the body's response to stress. Explain two ways these responses are normally counteracted, and what happens if the responses are prolonged. How do individual differences in recovery from stress can affect biological and psychological resilience?

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This solution describes how the body responds to stress, and discusses differences in responses.

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(1) Descriptions of the body's response to stress. Explain two ways these responses are normally counteracted and what happens if the responses are prolonged.

Many studies have focused on the effects of stressors such as the loss of a job, or a physical ailment that may contribute to a stressful situation. For example, stress refers to "any force when applied causes some modification of the form" (Reber & Reber, 1988, 716). Thus, as stress applies to the human body, it places a hardship or burden on the individual that requires a certain degree of adjustment and/or coping. This stressful situation or stressor elicit responses that include: (a) anxiety, (b) physical changes, (c) observable reactions, and (d) external/ internal reactions. Thus, stress is a process that involves an individual reaction to a single event or events occurring in his or her world. For example, individuals may be exposed to stress because of physical pain, an evaluation of self and/ others. In addition, stressors can be physical or psychological.

*Physical responses

Physical responses are experienced as anxiety based on adrenalin from the autonomic nervous system [ANS] (Pinel, 2006). According to Pinel, all stressors whether physiological or psychologically produces a pattern of physiological changes. Physical stress response is due to stressors acting upon neural circuit stimulate that release the adrenocorticotrophic hormone (ACTH). In their study, Dickerson & Kenney (2004) explain cortisol responses caused by acute stressors. They assert that psychological factors can ...

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