200 words or more Nevid, Rathus, & Greene (2011) state that …

200 words or more Nevid, Rathus, & Greene (2011) state that prolonged or intense stress can put too much strain on our coping ability and cause intense emotional distress. Do you believe stress can cause physical illness? Give a specific example to back up your answer. Reference Nevid, J. S., Rathus, S. A., & Green, B. (2011). Abnormal psychology in a changing world (8th ed.). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson.

There is a growing body of evidence that suggests that prolonged or intense stress can indeed lead to physical illness. This is supported by research in the field of psychoneuroimmunology, which examines the interactions between the mind, the nervous system, and the immune system.

One specific example of how stress can cause physical illness is the relationship between chronic stress and cardiovascular disease. Numerous studies have found that individuals who experience chronic stress are at a higher risk for developing heart disease. This may be due to the fact that stress triggers a cascade of physiological changes in the body, such as increased heart rate and elevated blood pressure. Over time, these physiological changes can lead to the development of atherosclerosis, a condition in which the walls of the arteries become thickened and narrowed, reducing blood flow to the heart.

Another example is the link between stress and gastrointestinal disorders. Chronic stress has been shown to be a risk factor for conditions such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) and peptic ulcers. Stress can disrupt the normal functioning of the digestive system, leading to symptoms such as abdominal pain, diarrhea, and constipation. Additionally, stress can affect the balance of bacteria in the gut, which can further contribute to the development of gastrointestinal problems.

Furthermore, stress has been found to negatively impact the immune system, increasing susceptibility to infections and impairing the body’s ability to fight off illness. Research has shown that chronic stress can suppress immune function, leading to a higher risk of infections and slower wound healing. For example, studies have found that individuals who experience chronic stress are more likely to develop respiratory infections and take longer to recover from them.

In addition to these examples, stress has also been implicated in a range of other physical health problems, including obesity, diabetes, and even certain types of cancer. Stress can influence behaviors such as overeating and physical inactivity, which are risk factors for these conditions. Furthermore, chronic stress can dysregulate hormone levels in the body, such as cortisol, which can have detrimental effects on metabolic processes and contribute to the development of chronic health problems.

Overall, the evidence strongly suggests that stress can cause physical illness. Chronic or intense stress can put a significant strain on the body’s coping mechanisms, leading to physiological changes that can have long-term negative effects on health. It is important to recognize and manage stress effectively in order to promote both mental and physical well-being.