Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: June 25, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963978 | Print ISBN: 9781412909280 | Online ISBN: 9781412963978| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Cheryl N. Carmin & Elise D. Massie
There is a lack of consensus on how to best define the concept of stress. Concerns related to the scientific status of the construct have led some authors to suggest that it be abandoned altogether or restricted to nontechnical usage. Even at the level of physiology, the mechanisms involved in a stress response cannot be adequately differentiated from anxiety or depression. Likewise, responses to stress are broad and can include anger and hostility, emotional suppression or repression, and disengagement, all of which are similarly confounded with other constructs. Further, the nature of Stressors can be confounded with traumatic events depending on how the individual experiences the event. There is compelling, albeit limited, research that has demonstrated a relationship between the experience of negative life events, especially those that are objectively measured and chronic in nature, and functional changes in the immune system. The possible association between stress and the development ...