Two physiatrists Thomas Holmes and Richard Rahe carried out a detailed survey into the main causes of Stress in the human body.
Their research involved the medical records of over 5000 patients, from the information gathered in this way they were able to identify the key factors to stress overload. They made a chart
listing the 43 most stressful life events.
This research was carried out back in 1967 and has been validated by further investigations into stress related illness, and is commonly regarded as the major guide line to understanding the
causes of stress.
The findings are still used in everyday diagnosis of patients by health professionals.
Holmes-Rahe Stress Scale.
- Death of Spouse 100
- Divorce 73
- End of a Relationship 65
- Prison terms 63
- Death of close family member 63
- Personal Injury, Illness, etc 53
- Marriage 50
- Redundancy/Job loss 47
- Retirement 45
- Marriage/relationship reconciliation 45
- Changing health of family member 44
- Pregnancy 40
- Sexual Problems 39
- Addition of new family member 39
- Business re-adjustment 39
- Change in Financial Status 38
- Death of a Close Friend 37
- Change to Different Line of Work 35
- Increased Marital Arguments 35
- Mortgage or loan over £10,000 31
- Fore-closure of Mortgage or of Loan 31
- Change in work responsibilities 29
- Son/daughter Leaving Home 29
- Trouble with In-Laws 29
- High Personal Achievements 28
- Spouse begins or Stops Work 26
- Starting or finishing School 26
- Change in Living Conditions 25
- Revision of Personal Habits 24
- Trouble with Employer 23
- Change in Work Hours 20
- Change in Residence 20
- Change in Schools 20
- Change in Recreation 19
- Change in Church Activities 19
- Change in Social Activities 18
- Mortgage or Loan < £10,000 17
- Change in Sleeping Habits 16
- Changed number of Family Gatherings 15
- Holidays 13
- Christmas Season 12
- Minor violation of the Law 11
In calculating Your Personal Score, only add together events that have happened in the last 12 – 18 Months.
If you total over 150, you have been under a lot of stress, requiring a high degree of adaptation, with a 50% chance of serious health deterioration over the next 12 months.
If you total over 300, you have an 80% chance of serious deterioration in your health within the next year.
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