Boston Marathon Bombing Viewing Linked to More Stress
(Ivanhoe Newswire) – Prolonged media exposure to coverage of the Boston Marathon bombings has been linked to more acute stress than having been at or near the actual bombing, according to new research from University of California Irvine.
Researchers sampled 4,675 adults two to four weeks after the Boston Marathon bombing, and found those who were exposed to more than six hours per day of coverage were nine times more likely to report acute stress symptoms than those exposed to less than one hour a day. Acute stress levels increased with each additional hour of media exposure. The findings are similar to past studies examining the effects of exposure to coverage of the September 11th attacks and the Iraq War.
"We suspect that there's something about repeated exposure to violent images or sounds that keeps traumatic events alive and can prolong the stress response in vulnerable people,” study lead E. Alison Holman, associate professor of nursing science at UC Irvine was quoted as saying. “There is mounting evidence that live and video images of traumatic events can trigger flashbacks and encourage fear conditioning. If repeatedly viewing traumatic images reactivates fear or threat responses in the brain and promotes rumination, there could be serious health consequences."
For more information, go to: http://news.uci.edu/press-releases/prolonged-viewing-of-boston-marathon-bombings-media-coverage-tied-to-acute-stress/
SOURCE: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, December 2013
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