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9 Cards in this Set

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General Adaptation Syndrome

Proposes that the same general physiological reaction is mounted for all types of stressors. alarm, resistance, exhaustion.


Initial reaction in which the body mobilizes to combat the stressor. SAM axis is activated.


Physiological adaptations take place to help cope with prolonged stressors. But ability to withstand additional stressors is reduced. HPA axis is activated.


Physiological resources are depleted as the body becomes unable to cope with the prolonged stressor

Pathways of the stress response

Has a fast (SAM) initial component and a slower adaptive component (HPA). Both are generated by hormones released from the adrenal glands.

SAM axis

Sympathetic, adrenal, medullary axis.

HPA axis

Hypothalamic, pituitary, adrenal axis.


A glucocorticoid hormone synthesized from cholesterol in the adrenal cortex. Highest levels occur in the morning. Primary targets are metabolism, and ion channels for acute exposure, and immune system and memory formation for chronic exposure.

Prefrontal Cortex

Essentially keeps our baseline instincts controlled. Under stress, the ability to control these instincts becomes limited.