The effects of the type A behaviour pattern, perceived stress and social structure on depressive symptomatology, alcohol consumption, and smoking behaviours : secondary analysis of an interaction model : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of requirements for the degree of Master of Arts with endorsement in Clinical Psychology, Massey University

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Massey University
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A theoretical interaction model is pre­sented relating perceived stress, the Type A Be­haviour Pattern (assessed by means of the Struc­tured Interview method), and the psychosocial var­iable close friends, with psychological and prob­lematic behavioural outcomes, The model was tested in a secondary analysis of data from a community sample of 524 New Zealand males ages between 30 and 55 years. (Spicer et al, 1981). As an adaption and elaboration of the original study model, stress variables included combined upset/excitement scores, upset alone, undesirable events, life events total, workload, loss upset, and bereavement upset, The latter two stress vari­ables were constructed out of the original data, Outcome variables included depressive symptomatol­ogy, alcohol consumption, and smoking behaviours, Consistent with findings in Spicer et al. (1981), interaction effects show Type As more likely to smoke and consume more alcohol than Type Bs, when under stress. Another significant finding is that number of close friends did not moderate the rela­tionship between the Type A Pattern and health outcomes, The Buffering Effect was therefore re­jected for this group, Overall, evidence showed the benefits of adopting an interaction strategy consequent upon the discovery of no main effect relationship among variables of interest. A notable few interactions were not in the expected direction, including the finding that Type As tended to drink more alcohol the more friends they had. Limitations of the present model focused on the relatively unsatisfactory performance of the workload and friends variables. Future studies of this type might well benefit from the inclusion of a qualitative component for each.
Coronary heart disease, Etiology, Type A behavior