Original Article

Annals of Behavioral Medicine

, Volume 45, Issue 1, pp 110-120

Affective Reactivity to Daily Stressors and Long-Term Risk of Reporting a Chronic Physical Health Condition

  • Jennifer R. PiazzaAffiliated withDepartment of Human Development and Family Studies, Pennsylvania State UniversityDepartment of Health Science, California State UniversityDepartment of Health Science, KHS-243, California State University Email author 
  • , Susan T. CharlesAffiliated withDepartment of Psychology and Social Behavior, University of California
  • , Martin J. SliwinskiAffiliated withDepartment of Human Development and Family Studies, Pennsylvania State University
  • , Jacqueline MogleAffiliated withDepartment of Human Development and Family Studies, Pennsylvania State University
  • , David M. AlmeidaAffiliated withDepartment of Human Development and Family Studies, Pennsylvania State University

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Abstract

Background

Daily stressors, such as an argument with a spouse or an impending deadline, are associated with short-term changes in physical health symptoms. Whether these minor hassles have long-term physical health ramifications, however, is largely unknown.

Purpose

The current study examined whether exposure and reactivity to daily stressors is associated with long-term risk of reporting a chronic physical health condition.

Methods

Participants (N = 435) from the National Study of Daily Experiences completed a series of daily diary interviews between 1995 and 1996 and again 10 years later.

Results

Greater affective (i.e., emotional) reactivity to daily stressors at time 1 was associated with an increased risk of reporting a chronic physical health condition at time 2.

Conclusion

Results indicate that how people respond to the daily stressors in their lives is predictive of future chronic health conditions.

Keywords

Daily stressors Stress Chronic health conditions Chronic illness Reactivity