General adaptation syndrome – Intro to Psychology
Thanks Greg! The three stages are what Selye referred to as the General Adaptation Syndrome. To recap, General Adaptation Syndrome consists of three stages. First is the alarm stage. This is when your body first reacts to the stressful or threatening situation. With activation of the sympathetic nervous system and the HPA Axis. The second stage is the resistance stage. This is when your body tries to adapt to the stress. Here, we have sustained release of cortisol, as our body attempts to maintain our level of arousal to combat the threat or the stressful situation. And finally we have the exhaustion stage. This is when our body resources have been depleted in an attempt to deal with the threat or stressful situation. As a result of this depletion, our immune system is weakened, making it more likely that we experience illness and infection. It’s important to note however that this model doesn’t account for all stress responses. In fact, new research has shown that different emotions can actually produce different activation patterns in a autonomic nervous system. Which call for some question of the validity of the general adoption syndrome never the less this model does serve as an overview of how are bodies might react with stressful event.