Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

LifeSkills training helps teens manage anger, lower blood pressure

Date:
September 10, 2012
Source:
Georgia Health Sciences University
Summary:
A 10-week program that fits easily into the high school curriculum could give students a lifetime of less anger and lower blood pressure, according to new research.

A 10-week program that fits easily into the high school curriculum could give students a lifetime of less anger and lower blood pressure, researchers report.

Health and physical education teachers taught anger and stress management to 86 ninth graders in Augusta, Ga., and found their ability to control anger increased, their anxiety decreased and their blood pressures were generally lower over the course of a day compared to 73 of their peers who received no intervention, according to a study published in the journal Translational Behavioral Medicine.

Among the 30 percent of participants with higher blood pressures, the diastolic measure -- the bottom number reflecting pressure inside blood vessels when the heart is relaxed and filling with blood -- decreased about two points, said Dr. Vernon A. Barnes, physiologist at the Institute of Public and Preventive Health at Georgia Health Sciences University.

Even a small downward shift in blood pressure in youth could substantially reduce hypertension risk and related cardiovascular disease risk over the long term and improve public health, the researchers said. The benefits held up at six months.

"We believe we have an effective method that any school could use to help curtail violence and keep adolescents out of trouble with an improved mental state that benefits their physical well-being," Barnes said. Further study is needed to measure the program's impact in hypertensive schoolchildren, he noted.

Escalating anger and violence among youths have been associated with increased levels of stress and anxiety, which in turn increases blood pressure in adolescents, the researcher said. Additionally, self-reported feelings of anger have been shown to predict aggression in youth.

The program taught in 10, 50-minute sessions at two high schools in 2005 and 2006 is protocol-driven, fits easily into the school day and has implications for improved decision making and coping skills for adolescents in any venue, the researchers said. It appears to be the first study to examine the impact of stress management on blood pressure and indices of anger and anxiety in schoolchildren.

Drs. Redford B. Williams and Virginia P. Williams, founders of Williams LifeSkills Inc. and study co-authors, developed the 10 skills taught in William LifeSkills workshops. The former directs Duke University's Behavioral Medicine Research Center and the latter led efforts to adapt the training for adolescents, citing its ability to lower blood pressure and improve overall health and well-being in adults.

The lessons help adolescents learn to be assertive without being aggressive, make sound decisions about whether to act on negative thoughts and increase their positive interactions. Some stressful situations students worked through in class were real-life situations they shared with classmates. Their blood pressure was measured around the clock and they received pre- and post-testing to assess anger and anxiety levels.

High blood pressure problems in children are becoming increasingly common. About 30 percent of U.S. adults are hypertensive, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, while about 5 percent of children already show evidence of high blood pressure.

The research was conducted at two inner-city high schools, T.W. Josey High School and the Academy of Richmond County, and funded by a $750,000 million grant from the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (grant R42 HL072644).


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Georgia Health Sciences University. The original article was written by Toni Baker. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Vernon A Barnes, Maribeth H Johnson, Redford B Williams, Virginia P Williams. Impact of Williams LifeSkills® training on anger, anxiety, and ambulatory blood pressure in adolescents. Translational Behavioral Medicine, 2012; DOI: 10.1007/s13142-012-0162-3

Cite This Page:

Georgia Health Sciences University. "LifeSkills training helps teens manage anger, lower blood pressure." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 10 September 2012. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120910162029.htm>.
Georgia Health Sciences University. (2012, September 10). LifeSkills training helps teens manage anger, lower blood pressure. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 30, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120910162029.htm
Georgia Health Sciences University. "LifeSkills training helps teens manage anger, lower blood pressure." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2012/09/120910162029.htm (accessed September 30, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

How 'Yes Means Yes' Defines Sexual Assault

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) — Aimed at reducing sexual assaults on college campuses, California has adopted a new law changing the standard of consent for sexual activity. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Scientists May Have Found An Early Sign Of Pancreatic Cancer

Newsy (Sep. 29, 2014) — Researchers looked at 1,500 blood samples and determined people who developed pancreatic cancer had more branched chain amino acids. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

Colo. Doctors See Cluster of Enterovirus Cases

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) — Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

Dr.'s Unsure of Cause of Fast-Spreading Virus

AP (Sep. 29, 2014) — Doctors at the Children's Hospital of Colorado say they have treated over 4,000 children with serious respiratory illnesses since August. Nine of the patients have shown distinct neurological symptoms, including limb weakness. (Sept. 29) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins