Social Psychology Theories Sample Essay

Social Psychology Theories

Concepts from Various Theories

Among the concepts correlated to the 65-year-old patient include stress, anxiety, depression and coping. It would be worth to note that several behavioral and social theories address these concepts including Lazarus’ Stress and Coping theory that focuses on how individuals overcome or cope with situations constituted by immense stress. This stipulation is anchored on the fact that the patient experiences a high degree of stress due to her cancer diagnosis which further undermines her quality of life and ability to be positive. In this regard, the Lazarus stress and coping theory bear an essential perspective that informs the process-oriented approach geared towards comprehending an individual’s inner thoughts, perceptions, and behavior in a particular situation (McEwin & Wills, 2014). It can be affirmed that the patient first experiences the reaction of fear and panic which is then followed by a deep state of depression as she tries to comprehend the new devastating situation of living with her diagnosis. However, amid the stress, depression, and anxiety, the theory also coins that coping results from the patient managing her stress and depression which then leads to adaptation (Biggs, Brough & Drummond, 2017). The health provider, therefore, ought to conduct a comprehensive assessment of the patient’s self-coping mechanism to determine a probable customized therapeutic approach that addresses the needs of the patient.

The Influence of Age in Care Planning

Several factors should be considered if the patient was 25 years old as opposed to 65 years old. The provider should consider additional aspects when planning treatment like embarrassment and anger emanating from the frustrations of her disturbed body image. At the age of 25, the patient is still young and vibrant with hopes of raising a family of her own. For this reason, she may experience feelings of anger due to the lost chance to bond with her child through breastfeeding following her breast cancer diagnosis (Biggs et al., 2017). It would be imperative to consider feelings of embarrassment when planning treatment following the Mastectomy that could adversely affect her relationship with her sexual partner given that it has the capacity to lead into a permanent rift if it remains unchecked (Evans et al., 2016). The provider should take into account the aspect of body image following the fact that at 25 years, the patient may manifest anxiety and reduced self-esteem due to the inability to wear certain clothing that exposes the scarring resulting from the Mastectomy.

Breast Cancer Awareness through Social Psychology Theories

Among the most essential social psychology theories that have been used in the promotion of breast cancer awareness is the Theory of Action and Health Belief Model. These theories have along way towards fostering the development of community health education programs that enable women to perform self-breast exams. For instance, the health belief model enables health care providers to determine the relationship between the benefits as well as the barriers correlated to health-seeking behavior among individuals (Biggs et al., 2017). On the other hand, theories such as the social cognitive theory are used in the development of campaigns and advertisements geared towards raising awareness for breast cancer. The theory posits that the acquisition of knowledge is based on making observations of others within social contexts (Conrad & Barker, 2010). For example, people have for a long time linked pink ribbons with breast cancer awareness which is a campaign strategy that compels a change in behavior among individuals in regards to regularly making breast cancer screening appointments.

The Theories in My Practice

In my behavioral mental health practice, the Health belief model has been employed in developing an alcohol abstinence program. The program is provided with the other programs within the hospital such as the inpatient dual diagnosis program that is aimed at aiding individuals to break free from chemical dependency. The individual concepts used from the health belief model are presented below:

  • Perceived susceptibility belief of developing a chronic health condition.
    • Example: Does the patient have the belief that he/she may develop lung cancer due to his/her alcohol dependency?


Biggs, A., Brough, P., & Drummond, S. (2017). Lazarus and Folkman’s psychological stress and coping theory. The handbook of stress and health, 349-364.

Conrad, P., & Barker, K. (2010). The social construction of illness: Key Insights and policy implications. Journal of Health and Social Behavior: Special Issue, 51, S67–S79. doi: 10.1177/0022146510383495

Evans, C., Hamilton, R., Tercyak, K., Peshkin, B., Rabemananjara, K., Isaacs, C., & O’Neill, S. (2016, June). Understanding the needs of young women regarding breast cancer risk assessment and genetic testing: convergence and divergence among patient-counselor perceptions and the promise of peer support. In Healthcare (Vol. 4, No. 3, p. 35). Multidisciplinary Digital Publishing Institute.

McEwin, M., & Wills, E.M. (2014). Theoretical basis for nursing. (4th ed.). Philadelphia, PA: Wolters Kluwer Health.

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