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Stress, Depression and Social Support - Assignment Example

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It is evidently clear from the discussion that psychological stress and depression are related to the mental status of an individual; however, their clinical implications have been evidenced and proven by many clinicians and researchers…
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Stress, Depression and Social Support
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 Stress Management
Discuss coping and depression, including relationships between the following 3 separate
Events
1. Decrease in serotonin receptors
2. Rise in stress hormone cortisol
3. Depression, learned helplessness and sense of control
Psychological stress and depression are related to the mental status of an individual; however, their clinical implications have been evidenced and proven by many clinicians and researchers. Stress and depression affect functioning neurotransmitters such as endorphins which act on stimulation of brain cells and nerves. In case of stress and depression, serotonin, a type of endorphin, does not function as intended. Neurotransmission of serotonin is lowered in case of depression. This is in turn related to higher levels of cortisol in such states, which inhibits neurotransmission of serotonin (Heina et al, 2002)
Adrenal glands, responsible for the freight, flight and fight mechanisms of the body, secrete the hormone cortisol. Increased levels of cortisol have been found in flight and fight processes. In a normal person, normal cortisol secretion helps in various body metabolisms including insulin regulation, blood pressure normalization, immunity and inflammatory conditions. However, in cases of depression, cortisol has been found to be at higher levels, impairing thyroid functions, loss of memory, fluctuation of blood sugar and pressure levels, loss of weight and weakening of muscle tissue, lower immunity, increase in abdominal fat and cholesterol levels (Heina et al, 2002).
In total, abnormal cortisol found in depression directly impacts thyroid functioning which in turn acts on all other body mechanisms impacting mental and physical wellbeing. Prolonged exposure to stress conditions results in depression, which, in turn, disturbs the neuroendocrine functions. Lack of appropriate interventions to address or cope with stress will further lower one’s self-confidence and controlling power. All these psychological impressions are a result of serotonin inhibition caused due to increased circulation of cortisol (Tafet et al, 2001). Hence, stress conditions have to be timely diagnosed and appropriate management has to be employed in order to reverse the effects of increased cortisol.
References
Heina, A., et. al. (2002). Relationship between cortisol and serotonin metabolites and
transporters in alcoholism (correction of alcoholism). Pharmacopsychiatry 35.4 pp:127-34.
Tafet, G.E., et. al. (2001). Correlation between cortisol level and serotonin uptake in patients
with chronic stress and depression. Cognitive, Affective, & Behavioral Neuroscience 1.4. pp:388-393. Read More
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