Linking person and context in the daily stress process.
In this study we combined daily diary data with interview data to investigate individual differences in the impact of stressful daily events on mood. Using a sample of 96 women in an urban community, we examined perceived neighborhood quality and major life events as possibly potentiating the effects of stressful daily events, and we viewed social supports as potentially buffering this daily process. Results confirmed that the presence of chronic ecologic stress (neighborhood perceptions) exacerbated the immediate effects of stressful daily events on mood and also increased the likelihood of enduring effects of daily stressors on next day's mood. Contrary to expectations, previous exposure to major life events decreased the impact of stressful daily events. The availability of social supports, although not buffering the impact of stressful daily events on mood, did mitigate the enduring effects of these events on next day's mood. This study also presents a method for analyzing daily time-series data, while correcting for potential problems of autocorrelated error terms. As such, this study represents a significant advance over previous analytic approaches to time-series data in the study of the stress process.
Caspi, A; Bolger, N; Eckenrode, J
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