Emotions, Stress, and Health

Overconfidence and Anti-Vaccination Attitudes

There is strong consensus among scientists that vaccines are safe and effective in combating the spread of disease. Why, then, does such a large segment of the public believe false claims of a link between vaccines and autism and hold “anti-vax” attitudes? Matthew Motta, Timothy Callaghan, and Steven Sylvester (2018) suggested that this is due [...]

How Undocumented Status Shapes Parenting

Approximately seven percent of children in the United States live with at least one undocumented parent. Cardoso and colleagues (2018) conducted semi-structured interviews with undocumented adults in Texas between 2012 and 2013 to better understand how undocumented status shapes parenting behaviors. Several common experiences were identified in these interviews. First, parents reported that everyday tasks, [...]

Severe Mental Illness and Firearm Access

In the United States, severe mental illness is frequently cited as a primary cause of mass shootings and high rates of gun violence. Miranda Lynne Baumann and Brent Teasdale (2018) investigated this relationship by comparing rates of gun violence among 255 recently discharged psychiatric patients and a matched group of 490 community residents. These authors [...]

Coping and Sexual Harassment

Scarduzio, Sheff, and Smith (2017) conducted in-depth interviews with 24 women and 2 men who had experienced sexual harassment to identify common coping strategies. These authors note that 43% of college students have experienced online sexual harassment and that this can lead to serious emotional and health problems. Their work was based on Lazarus and [...]

Risk Factors for Homelessness among Women U.S. Military Veterans

According to Dichter, Wagner, Borrero, Broyles, and Montgomery (2017), the rate of homelessness among female veterans is higher than for their male counterparts or for female or male nonveterans. In response to the lack of data available on the risk factors contributing to female veteran homelessness, these authors surveyed 554 women receiving care from the [...]

Predictors of Long-Term Opioid Use

An increase in opioid use disorders and fatal overdoses has resulted in a public health crisis in many regions of the United States and Canada. At the same time, as Thielke and colleagues (2017) pointed out, there is little evidence to support the effectiveness of the long-term use of opioids to treat chronic pain. Thus, [...]

Anxiety after the Tohoku Earthquake

Nakayachi, Yokoyama, and Oki (2014) investigated how risk perception and affect may change following a large-scale disaster; such changes could influence individuals’ willingness to take important safety measures. The authors compared data from two national surveys in Japan, one conducted before the 2011 Tohoku quake and associated Fukushima nuclear accident (during which nearly 20,000 people [...]

Brain Imaging and Lie Detection

Previous research has pointed to the inability of humans to reliably detect lies in others. Studies have demonstrated that polygraph data is also frequently inaccurate and unreliable, and it is generally prohibited as admissible evidence in courtrooms in the U.S. Thus, new forms of technology have been sought as an objective method of lie detection. [...]

Living with the Chronic Threat of Terrorism

With the goal of identifying the coping strategies used by individuals who face the chronic threat of terrorism, Dickstein and colleagues (2012) administered a structured telephone interview to Israeli citizens living near the Gaza border – a region that is frequently the target of rocket and mortar attacks. Seven coping factors were identified and the [...]

Violence Exposure and Sexual Risk

African American adolescents are at increased risk for violence exposure, which includes being the victim of violence as well as witnessing violence. Wilson and colleagues (2012) observed that few studies have addressed the impact of violence exposure on African American girls. They were particularly interested in the relationship between violence exposure and sexual health, since [...]