Stress Management

Posted on: 16th May 2023


Question 1. Outline the transactional model of stress (Lazarus & Folkman, 1987) in your own words focusing on both psychological and physiological outcomes.

•Question 3. What is the link between the physiological stress response (HPA axis) and the immune system?

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Stress Management

Question One

Stress is characterized by emotional, psychological, and sometimes physical pressure. The model displays stress due to interacting with humans and their complex environments. The concept describes coping as an occurrence comprised of psychological and developmental reactions that individuals apply to cope with intrinsic and extrinsic pressures that are believed to exceed their resources. The transactional paradigm of stress and management states that stress constitutes a process of recognizing, responding to, and adjusting to a situation over time.

Undeniably, the Transactional Theory of Stress is a paradigm that emphasizes evaluations by analyzing damages, risks, and problems faced by individuals suffering from trauma. The outcome or output of the examination comprises an explanation of the procedure utilized to manage stressful circumstances. As per the classical theory, the source of stress for most individuals is often an evaluation of the conditions they most value themselves (Biggs, Brough, & Drummond, 2017). In particular, the paradigm posits that individuals undergo two evaluation stages before emotional processing and trauma response. In the primary evaluation, we examine the context to determine its significance for us.

Precisely, individuals assess the chance of gain or loss. They do not stress over it and assume it is unnecessary if it does not. If it is essential, they decide if it is hopeful or dangerous. When people believe it to be hazardous, they do an additional inspection. These assessments adjust to the circumstances by examining the balance between situational demands, such as danger, vulnerability, difficulty, and other obvious aspects, such as social support and aptitude.

Similarly, subsequent evaluations may result in problem-focused or emotion-focused coping approaches. The objective of problem-focused methods is to handle the actual situation and make it more pleasant. When successful, coping might be difficult, but it typically results in a fundamental shift in the circumstances (Schäfer, Pels, & Kleinert, 2020). However, the emotion-focused coping approach involves altering our connection with the stressful situation to lessen its impact. This approach may include cursing, deflection, or cognitively restating the event’s significance. While this does not alter the difficulty itself, it does limit its effects on individuals. Lazarus and Folkman (1984) note that such approaches comprise denial, escape-evasion, accountability or guilt, restraint, and involvement in specific reevaluations that include putting a positive spin on the situation (Stanojević et al., 2018). However, this technique may be useful for not expressively predisposed occurrences. Versatile coping strategies aid us in managing our stress responses throughout time, such as focusing on the positive aspects of a situation (Gieselmann, Elberich, Mathes, & Pietrowsky, 2020). Conversely, maladaptive stress management strategies alter one’s feelings of tension in the short run but accomplish little or possibly exacerbate the problem in the long run.

Question Two

There exist a positive link between psychological stress and immune system dysfunction. Psychological stress is managed with the support of the immune system, which generates specialized hormone responses. Stress may have long-term effects on a person’s health and well-being (Ludwig, Roy, & Dwivedi, 2019). To combat hormones, the sensitive nervous system and the pituitary-adrenal axis work together physiologically to raise the blood levels of particular hormones. Prolactin and other hormones play an important part in the body’s response to stressful circumstances.

The body’s basic homeostasis and response need to stress that the HPA axis works. The HPA axis is primarily responsible for the body’s reaction to fear and stress. Homeostasis has returned to its original state at this point. Although stressors are always present, a person becomes used to the stressor via repeated and supportive HPA axis enactment (Pietromonaco & Powers, 2015). Like the HPA axis, the adrenal medulla produces stress synthetics like epinephrine and norepinephrine, which keeps the synthesis of CRF, ACTH, and cortisol successful.

Lastly, when the HPA axis is activated, corticosteroids are pushed out of the thymus and spleen and into the body’s periphery, where they suppress a variety of immune responses. The central nervous system may also be alerted to new antigens in the peripheral organs using the opposite framework. The HPA axis modulates the immunological response, suppressing the immune and provocative responses when cortisol levels are high enough (Akinola, Kapadia, Lu, & Mason, 2019). An immune system’s over-activation might be fatal if it activates the immune system, but this adaptation can prevent it by limiting tissue damage from swelling. Anxiety symptoms include a lack of sleep, a poor diet, and an increased urge to use alcohol and other substances to deal with stress (Reed & Raison, 2016). These habits have a significant influence on your immune system. Thus, the body makes hormones to fix the problem and bring the body back into balance.



Akinola, M., Kapadia, C., Lu, J. G., & Mason, M. F. (2019). Incorporating physiology into creativity research and practice: The effects of bodily stress responses on creativity in organizations. Academy of Management Perspectives33(2), 163-184. Retrieved on April 10, 2022, from

Biggs, A., Brough, P., & Drummond, S. (2017). Lazarus and Folkman’s psychological stress and coping theory. The handbook of stress and health: A guide to research and practice, 351-364. Retrieved on April 10, 2022, from

Folkman, S., & Lazarus, R. S. (1984). Stress, appraisal, and coping (p. 460). New York: Springer Publishing Company.

Gieselmann, A., Elberich, N., Mathes, J., & Pietrowsky, R. (2020). Nightmare distress revisited: Cognitive appraisal of nightmares according to Lazarus’ transactional model of stress. Journal of behavior therapy and experimental psychiatry68, 101517. Retrieved on April 10, 2022, from

Ludwig, B., Roy, B., & Dwivedi, Y. (2019). Role of HPA and the HPG axis interaction in testosterone-mediated learned helpless behavior. Molecular neurobiology56(1), 394-405. Retrieved on April 10, 2022, from

Pietromonaco, P. R., & Powers, S. I. (2015). Attachment and health-related physiological stress processes. Current opinion in psychology1, 34-39. Retrieved on April 10, 2022, from

Reed, R. G., & Raison, C. L. (2016). Stress and the immune system. In Environmental influences on the immune system (pp. 97-126). Springer, Vienna. Retrieved on April 10, 2022, from

Schäfer, A., Pels, F., & Kleinert, J. (2020). Effects of Different Coping Strategies on the Psychological and Physiological Stress Reaction. European Journal of Health Psychology. Retrieved on April 10, 2022, from

Stanojević, A., Marković, V. M., Čupić, Ž. Kolar-Anić, L., & Vukojević, V. (2018). Advances in mathematical modeling of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis dynamics and the neuroendocrine stress response. Current Opinion in Chemical Engineering, 21, 84-95. Retrieved on April 10, 2022, from

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