Stressors: Social


Environmental social stressors include both personal and societal factors. To provide a basic grounding in this field, we begin with a brief overview of definitional issues and theoretical perspectives. Specific illustrative examples of environmental stressors are considered next, followed by an overview of several illustrative assessment techniques, including a summary of their strengths and weaknesses. Finally, we conclude with some thoughts about possible directions for future research.

Definitional and Theoretical Perspectives

‘Stress’ can be described variously but is most often defined as person-environment demands that tax or exceed the individuaL's ability to adapt. A ‘stressor’ is an environmental, social, or internal demand that requires readjustment and becomes a chronic stressor if present for an extended amount of time (Thoits, 1995). ‘Distress’ refers to a physical or ...

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