LANGUAGE USE AND CARDIOVASCULAR RISK IN BEREAVEMENT: A MIXED METHODS APPROACH
AuthorMiller, Elizabeth Skylar
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
RightsCopyright © is held by the author. Digital access to this material is made possible by the University Libraries, University of Arizona. Further transmission, reproduction or presentation (such as public display or performance) of protected items is prohibited except with permission of the author.
AbstractThe death of a loved one is an extremely psychologically and physiologically taxing event. The present study explores the language used while experiencing this loss to better understand how individuals cope with their loss. Interviews from 9 bereaved and 10 non-bereaved participants were analyzed. Cardiovascular biomarkers were recorded and analyzed in conjunction with anger and emotion regulation. The present research looks specifically at anger, sadness, and metaphor incidence in relation to coping outcomes and cardiovascular risk biomarkers. This study explored the relationship between anger and blood pressure, metaphor and meaning making, and heart rate variability and emotion regulation indicated by interview behaviors laughing and crying. We also examined the differences between bereaved and non-bereaved individual’s indication of anger, sadness, and metaphor. We found significant results in the use of metaphor and finding meaning after the event, as well as a significant difference in the incidence of sadness between bereaved and non-bereaved individuals. The present study contributes to the growing body of research on an integrative model of bereavement.
Degree ProgramHonors College