Maladaptive responses to stress â or ways not to cope with stress
With stress people can either adapt, using coping processes,Â relaxation or therapy, but a lot of people turn to maladaptiveÂ responses. This is when they feel they can not turn to anyone, orÂ that the certain maladaption eases the stress/stressor. All it does isÂ mask the problem and causes more stress and strain as theÂ maladaptive responses become a dependant and serve only toÂ create a further stress. Denial is the main maladaptive behaviourÂ and result in one of the following occurring in order to cope withÂ the situation. Those therapists among you reading this may beÂ aware that client often slow down there drinking after hypnosis isÂ used on them. Most people believe that the maladaptiveÂ behaviour actually helps them, but it just helps to calm down aÂ state of anxiety that would not exist if they stopped theÂ maladaption. When people get stressed they smoke in excess,Â drink in excess and sometimes become very angry with thoseÂ around them.
When the maladaptive behaviour kicks in it becomes a habitÂ eventually that helps the through the stress, they becomeÂ dependent on it and fall into the category of addiction in theÂ case of drugs and alcohol. At this stage it may be where theÂ behavioural signs of stress show through.
The following are the main ones:-
â¢ Alcohol abuse
â¢ Alcohol dependence
â¢ Drugs i.e. Depressants (tranquilizers, barbiturates etc)
â¢ Over eating â As children this was programmed as a
conditioned response, if you like a habit that was formed at
an early age that has become second nature to the client.
â¢ Physical and verbal abuse â this can range from Deliberate
Self Harm on the person suffering, right to physical abuse of
partners and family. (Road rage fits here)
â¢ Non responding behavior â this is usually a pattern of evasion
techniques, this is where there is temporary release of the
tension, but trigger remains. Example of this are:
â¢ Spending Sprees â retail therapy â ( buyers remorse)
â¢ Blaming others
â¢ Over â working