Life Change, Social Support, Coping, and Health

  • Irwin G. Sarason
  • Barbara R. Sarason
Part of the NATO ASI Series book series (NSSA, volume 84)


Epidemiology is often defined as the study of the distribution of diseases and the factors that influence their distribution. A host of epidemiologically relevant factors—among them, sanitation, environmental and cultural variables, socioeconomic status, education, migration, marital status, and the death of loved ones-have been identified. Many of these factors exert their impacts not because of their characteristics per se but because of the way they are processed by the individual. Whether disease and maladaption result from their occurrence depends on the situational context, the personal resources of the individual, and how he or she experiences the relevant event. Within the past decade epidemiologists as well as those in other disciplines have placed increased emphasis on the idea that the impact of environment or health can only be understood when the environmental demands are viewed in the context of the resources available for coping (Cassel, 1976; Henry and Stephens, 1977; Jenkins, 1979; Kaplan, Cassel, and Gore, 1977).


Social Support Stressful Life Event Negative Life Event Sensation Seek Life Change 
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© Plenum Press, New York 1985

Authors and Affiliations

  • Irwin G. Sarason
  • Barbara R. Sarason

There are no affiliations available

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