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Stress – The Impacts of Stress

4. Coping with Stress

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About this Lecture


In this lecture, we think about coping with stress, focusing in particular on: (i) outlining the two primary drug types used to regulate stress levels: benzodiazepines and beta blockers; (ii) describing benzodiazepines as working by activating the naturally occurring gamma aminobutyric acid (GABA) neurotransmitter, which serves to decrease brain activity and create a state of relaxation; (iii) describing beta blockers, also used to control high blood pressure, which block the action of adrenaline and noradrenaline directly, reducing the feelings of increased heart rate when under stress; (iv) a criticism of drug treatments being that they only treat the symptoms of stress instead of the source, something that therapies like cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) can do; (v) stress inoculation training as a form of CBT, designed to prepare clients for stressful situations and increase their resilience to the effects of stress; (vi) a third method for coping with stress outlined as using biofeedback in the form of conditioning therapy; (vii) a fourth method being social support, separated into Cutrona and Suhr’s five categories: informational, emotional, esteem, social support network and tangible support.


In this course, Dr Livia Tomova (University of Cambridge) explores the topic of stress. In the first lecture, we think about the physiological stress response, detailing the key hormones, organs and neurotransmitters involved in these complicated biological processes. In the second lecture, we look at sources of stress and the methods researchers have used to measure someone’s stress level or response. In the third lecture, we expand on this by outlining individual differences in people’s responses to stressful situations, focusing on the concepts of hardiness and personality types. Next, we describe four key methods for coping with stress: drug therapies, cognitive behavioural therapies, biofeedback, and social support. In the fifth and final lecture, we explore how stress can impact cognition, specifically memory processes.

Research project looking for 16-19-year-old males:


Dr Livia Tomova is a research associate in the Department of Psychology at the University of Cambridge, with an interest in how stress, loneliness and social isolation affect the brain and mind. Dr Tomova’s current research focuses on biological markers indicating vulnerability to the effects of isolation and loneliness in adolescents and young adults. Some of Dr Tomova’s recent publications include 'The effects of social deprivation on adolescent development and mental health' (2020) and 'Acute stress alters neural patterns of value representation for others' (2020).

Cite this Lecture

APA style

Tomova, L. (2021, December 03). Stress – The Impacts of Stress - Coping with Stress [Video]. MASSOLIT.

MLA style

Tomova, L. "Stress – The Impacts of Stress – Coping with Stress." MASSOLIT, uploaded by MASSOLIT, 03 Dec 2021,

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