Psychological Science Faculty Publications and Presentations


The pathway from sensory processing sensitivity to physical health: Stress as a mediator

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Sensory processing sensitivity (SPS) has been proposed as an innate trait associated with differences in the processing and reactivity to internal and external stimuli. To date, there has been limited research on the association between SPS and physical health and only one study examining mediators of this relationship. The aim of this study was to examine psychological stress as a mediator of the SPS-health relationship in a predominately Hispanic sample of 923 adult undergraduates attending university between 2018 and 2020. We identified three SPS factors, each of which were associated with poorer physical health as assessed through two psychometrically validated self-report measures of physical symptoms. Additionally, we demonstrate that this relationship is mediated by perceived stress, suggesting that treatments focussed on stress reduction might be an avenue through which the impact of SPS on physical health can be modified.


Publication Title

Stress and health : journal of the International Society for the Investigation of Stress