Towards Psychosomatic Medicine: The Role of Age and Emotional Characteristics in People with Psychosomatic Disorders
Ageenkova, Ekaterina K.
Dedenok, Marta I.
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Studying the emotional characteristics in people with psychosomatic disorders (PSD) at the early stages of disease development is a topical research area in psychosomatic medicine, as it allows clarifying the psychological mechanisms of PSD formation. This exploratory research aims to study the age features of emotional characteristics in people with and without PSD. The study was carried out on a sample of 200 people aged 18–55 (M = 26.89; SD = 7.82) using the following questionnaires: the Perth Emotional Reactivity Scale-Short Form (PERS-S), the Perceived Stress Scale-10 (PSS-10), the Rumination subscale from the Cognitive Emotion Regulation questionnaire (CERq), the Emotion Regulation questionnaire and the Patient health questionnaire-4 (Phq-4). The results showed that the levels of stress, depressive and anxiety symptoms decrease with age. Ease/speed of activation, intensity, and duration of negative emotions, as well as rumination on stressful situations, are positively correlated with the level of stress, depressive and anxiety symptoms. With an increase in positive emotion duration, the severity of mental symptoms decreases. Compared to people aged 26–55 with or without PSD, young people aged 18–25 and especially young people with PSD have a more unfavorable psychosomatic status, which is characterized by a more explicit tendency to experience negative emotions with their higher intensity and duration. Emotion regulation difficulties at a young age (especially intensive and prolonged experience of negative emotions) may form the basis for PSD development. Correcting these difficulties at a young age may prevent PSD.
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