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Copyright © 1997, Jay Ligda.  All rights reserved.  Published by Humans in the Universe and Jay Ligda.

Stress

      Martini (1992) states that "any threat to homeostasis represents a form of stress" (p. 598).  Selye (as cited in Kabat-Zinn, 1990) first popularized the word stress in the 1950s.  His definition is, "the non-specific response of the organism to any pressure or demand."  Selye (as cited in Kabat-Zinn, 1990) coined the word stressor to "describe the stimulus or event that produced the stress response" or caused the threat to homeostasis (p. 236).

      Stressors can be both internal and external.  A fluctuation in temperature or a approaching predator are examples of external stressors.  Feelings, thoughts, dietary needs, and the sex drive can be understood as internal stressors.  Family affairs, economic matters, and social status are all examples of social stressors.  The total bodily reaction to stressors is known as the general adaptation syndrome, or sometimes known as the stress reaction cycle.

by Jay Ligda

(This work is a all or part of an original work first published/written for John. F. Kennedy University:  Final Integrative Project., Mar1996.)


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References

  • Martini, F. (1992).  The Fundamentals of Anatomy and Physiology. 2nd ed.  Englewood Cliffs, NJ:  Prentice-Hall.
  • Kabat-Zinn, J.  (1990).  Full Catastrophe Living:  Using the Wisdom of the Body and Mind to Face Stress, Pain, and Illness.  New York, NY:  Dell.
  • Pearson, D. & Shaw, S. (1982).  Life Extension:  A Practical Scientific Approach.  New York, NY:  Warner.

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