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Affective Reactions as Mediators of the Relationship between Stigma and Health

Citation

Mendes, Wendy Berry & Muscatell, Keely A. (2017). Affective Reactions as Mediators of the Relationship between Stigma and Health. In Major, Brenda; Dovidio, John F.; & Link, Bruce G. (Eds.), The Handbook of Stigma, Discrimination, and Health. New York: Oxford University Press.

Abstract

This chapter provides an overview of how emotions can contribute to poorer health among stigmatized populations. First, it describes some of the primary affective responses that stigmatized individuals might experience, including externalizing emotions, uncertainty, and anxious affect. These affective responses can occur as a result of interacting with individuals who display subtle or overt signs of bias or perceiving a system as unfair, or they can occur from expectations based on prior experiences that shape perception. Second, this chapter reviews how these affective states may alter underlying biological processes to directly influence health. Finally, it examines indirect pathways whereby emotion processes potentiate health-damaging behaviors, such as poor eating habits, restless sleep, excessive alcohol and drug abuse, and risky behavior. Overall, research in this area suggests that affective experiences resulting from stigmatization can change biology and behavior in ways that can ultimately lead to poor health.

URL

http://dx.doi.org/10.1093/oxfordhb/9780190243470.013.10

Reference Type

Book Chapter

Book Title

The Handbook of Stigma, Discrimination, and Health

Author(s)

Mendes, Wendy Berry
Muscatell, Keely A.

Editor(s)

Major, Brenda
Dovidio, John F.
Link, Bruce G.

Year Published

2017

Publisher

Oxford University Press

City of Publication

New York

Reference ID

12927