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Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Languages: English
Types: Article
Subjects: UOWSAT
Abbreviated progressive muscle relaxation (APMR) is a much used stress-management technique. Its efficacy relevant to placebo control is already established in the literature and the primary aim of the present study was to ascertain whether its proven impact on psychological stress measures is matched by a decrease in prevailing levels of the stress-associated hormone cortisol, using accurate and robust measurement based on multiple sampling of full diurnal cortisol secretion profiles. First-year university students can face significant stress in adjustment to academic demands and immersion in a novel social network and provided a convenient study population. One hundred and one first-year students completed APMR with prevailing stress levels assessed a week before and after intervention. Both cortisol and self-report measures were significantly reduced post-intervention by 8% and 10%, respectively. The efficacy of the intervention was independent of, and not modulated by neuroticism, gender, age and smoking status. We also demonstrated that cortisol reduction was unlikely to have been a consequence of adaptation to any initial cortisol elevation prompted by the challenge of the demanding saliva collection protocol. We conclude that the efficacy of APMR in this population extends to reduction in biologically expressed stress levels as well as levels based solely on self-report.
  • The results below are discovered through our pilot algorithms. Let us know how we are doing!

    • Adam EK, Kumari M. Assessing salivary cortisol in large-scale, epidemiological research. Psychoneuroendocrinology. 2009; 34: 1423-1436
    • Bernstein EA, Borkovec TD. Progressive relaxation training: A manual for the helping professions. Champaign, IL: Research Press; 1973.
    • Bewick B, Koutsopoulou G, Miles J, Slaa E, Barkham M. Changes in undergraduate students' psychological well-being as they progress through university. Stud High Educ. 2010; 35: 633-645
    • Blackwell E, Mendes de Leon CF, Miller GE. Applying Mixed Regression Models to the Analysis of Repeated-Measures Data in Psychosomatic Medicine. Psychosom Med. 2006; 68: 870-878
    • Garcia-Banda G, Chellew K, Fornes J, Perez G, Servera M, Evans P. Neuroticism and cortisol: Pinning down an expected effect. Int J Psychophysiol. 2014; 91: 132-138
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  • Discovered through pilot similarity algorithms. Send us your feedback.

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