Physiological stress reactions: Intervention of psychosocial work environment: distress and rehabilitation

Rikke Hinge Carlsson


The purpose of the PhD thesis was to investigate physiological stress reactions in connection with interventions related to psychosocial work environment.
One part of the dissertation was about restructuring in the workplace, since a comprehensive restructuring in the municipal area was carried out in Denmark on 1 January 2007. In 2006 and 2008, blood samples and questionnaires were collected from 359 persons employed in the administration in five municipalities. and two counties. Some of the participants were employed in municipalities or counties that merged with others (the merger group) and other participants got a new job outside the municipal area during the restructuring (new job group). In addition, there was a control group that was not subject to change. We analyzed changes in 13 different physiological markers in the blood and changes in the participants' own experiences of the mental work environment and stress.
The second part of the study was about stress management. This included 106 people with work-related stress. They carried out a stress treatment program over 3 months with significant improvement of psychological stress markers. Participants completed questionnaires and received blood samples before and after treatment.
During the workplace restructuring, a significant increase was seen in several of the physiological stress markers in the whole participant group overall, but by comparing the fusion group and the new job group with the control group, we found only a significant increase in 2 of the 13 measured physiological markers. In addition, a significant increase in self-experienced stress is seen throughout the whole group, but not significantly different in the three restructuring groups.
During the stress treatment intervention, we observed a significant decrease in several of the physiological stress markers in the intervention group.
Overall, significant changes were found in several physiological markers in the expected directions both in stress related to workplace restructuring and in stress management. However, it must be taken into account that the comparison between the different restructuring groups in connection with the workplace restructuring and a missing control group in connection with the stress treatment intervention limits the result. The conclusion is therefore unclear, but the result may indicate that physiological markers may be appropriate targets for understanding and observing the physiology of stress and stress management.
Antal sider135
ISBN (Trykt)978-87-996042-8-9
StatusUdgivet - 3 sep. 2015


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