Stress and Illness

Stress and Illness

Assignment Overview

Recall the video from your Module 1 Case Assignment on how stress affects the brain (Murgia, M. (n.d.). Ted Talks. How stress affects your brain

. Retrieved February 11, 2017, from Stress not only affects the structure and function of the brain, but its genetic makeup as well. In this module you were introduced to the various effects stress has on each body system, including the reproductive system. New research suggests that experiencing intense psychological trauma may have a genetic impact on a person’s future children. In the following video, Dr. Rachel Yehuda studied the genetic effects in a population of Holocaust survivors and found variations from the norm in both generations for the gene associated with depression and anxiety disorders. The findings imply that children of individuals who experience profound stress in life may be more likely to develop stress or anxiety disorders themselves.

Can Trauma Be Passed to the Next Generation Through DNA? PBS Learning Media. Accessed at

Case Assignment

Answer the following questions in essay format. For additional details, see the Case Assignment directions below.

1. How does experiencing trauma affect a person’s life?

2. Describe the term epigenetics. How does stress play a role in epigenetics?

3. Describe an event in history that could have caused stress-related changes to the next generation (some examples include the Holocaust, 9-11 terrorist attack, the Dutch famine of 1944). Include the disorders these children experienced (such as anxiety, depression, mental disorders, etc).

4. Why might it be helpful to know how children will be affected by trauma their parents experienced?

5. What kinds of events going on in the world right now could be producing similar effects in future generations?

Assignment Expectations

Organize this essay assignment using subtitles that summarize the topic from each question above. For example, to answer Question 1, use a descriptive subtitle like the following: Effects of Trauma.

Answer each question under the subtitle using complete sentences that relate back to the question.

Be sure to use APA formatting throughout your essay with 1-inch margins, 12-pt font, and double spacing throughout.

Include a title page, introduction, answers to the questions with subtitles, and concluding paragraph.

Remember to include in-text citations within the body of the essay referencing your resources (i.e., Murray, 2014).

Also, be sure to include a reference section at the end of your assignment listing all required readings and any additional resources you used to complete your essay.

A helpful guide to writing a quality essay can be found on your TLC Home Page under FAQ/Writing Tips/Student Guide to Writing a High-Quality Academic Paper. This guide also provides links to example essays written using APA format.

Direct quotes should be limited and must be designated by quotation marks. Paraphrased ideas must give credit to the original author, for example (Murray, 2014). Direct copying from “homework help” websites will not receive credit.

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