Literature has widely documented the link between stress and serious physical and mental health consequences (e.g., depression, heart disease, Alzheimer’s Disease, cancer). Women in middle-adulthood face a number of commingling stressors that may exacerbate their existing stress levels and place them as a higher risk of developing stress-related health issues. For example, in middle-adulthood women experience biological/hormonal changes (i.e., menopause, increased cortisol response to stressors), neural changes (i.e., cognitive declines), changes in skin function and appearance (i.e., wrinkles, sagging), as well as assuming multiple challenging roles (i.e., caregiver, employee, spouse). Due to the gravity of the effects of stress, there has been an increased need for a deeper understanding of stressors that women in middle–adulthood face and an increased need to target those specific stressors in an attempt to ameliorate their negative effects. In this context, the research reported here focused on developing a curriculum to conduct a one-day workshop for women in middle-adulthood in order to provide a deeper understanding of the various types of stress (e.g., hormonal/biological, age-related appearance changes, discrimination, gender role strain, multiple roles, cultural expectations, finances, etc.) experienced by women in middle-adulthood and providing culturally congruent stress reduction interventions. The development of the curriculum used to conduct a workshop is targeting women between the ages of 45 and 65 who are experiencing significant levels of stress and who wish to expand their knowledge of stressors and repertoire of stress reduction/management strategies. The curriculum was reviewed by two doctoral level mental health professionals who rated the content, strengths, and weaknesses of the curriculum. Their feedback was incorporated into a compilation of suggestions and future directions for the curriculum.
|Advisor:||Harrell, Shelly P.|
|Commitee:||Castaneda-Sound, Carrie, Reina, Astrid|
|School Location:||United States -- California|
|Source:||DAI-B 78/03(E), Dissertation Abstracts International|
|Subjects:||Mental health, Womens studies|
|Keywords:||Health, Middle adulthood, Middle age, Stress, Well-being|
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