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Psychological Disorders

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Bryar Grondin

on 22 January 2014

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Transcript of Psychological Disorders

Psychological Disorders

Describe yardsticks that are used to differentiate between normal and abnormal behavior

Cite and define the three D's that enter into diagnoses of abnormal behavior
describe the four components of anxiety
describe the four major features of PTSD
describe the biological factors involved in causing anxiety
compare psychoanalytic and cognitive explanations of anxiety disorders
describe three types of somatoform disorders and their casual factors
describe the three types of dissociative disorders and their casual factors
describe the motives for suicide, identify the warning signs of suicide, and state four guidelines for helping a suicidal person
component #1
define schizophrenia, and describe the major cognitive, behavioral, emotional, and perceptual features of schizophrenia
describe the differences among the four major subtypes of schizophrenic disorders
emotional symptoms include
feelings of tension
component #2
cogntive symptoms include:
thoughts about inability to cope
component #3
describe the evidence for genetic, neurological, and biochemical factors involved in causing schizophrenic disorders
physiological symptoms include:
increased heart rate
muscle tension
other autonomic arousal symptoms

component #4
describe the characteristics of antisocial personality disorder
behavioral symptoms include:
avoidance of feared situations
decreased task performance
increased startle response
compare the way that biological and behavioral theorists account for anticoscial personality disorder
describe the major features of borderline personality disorder and the causes of the disorders
describe the characteristics of autism and discuss the biological basis for the disorder
Define reliability as applied to diagnostic classification systems
1. The personal beliefs of a given diagnostician
-diagnosis may depend on unusual/random beliefs of the person making the judgement.

2. The expectations of the culture in which a person currently lives
- if a person is not doing what they are expected to do, they are considered to be abnormal.
3. The expectations of the person's culture of origin
-An American traveling to Dubai would be considered abnormal because of the lack of limits in our country compared to Dubai
4. General assumptions about human nature
-some people believe that homosexuality is abnormal, despite the formal change in 1973.
People who are extremely anxious, depressed, dissatisfied, or just upset with either themselves or life, especially if they have little control over the circumstances.
These are behaviors that are keeping the individual from working or having satisfying relationships with others. Also, these behaviors may interfere with the well-being of society.
5. Statistical deviation from the norm
-someone who is more intelligent or well adjusted than others would be considered abnormal
6. Harmfulness, suffering, and impairment
-distressing to self of others, dysfunctional to self or society, or violating social norms
1. Person experiences anxiety, arousal, and distress that were not present before a traumatic occurance
Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD): A severe anxiety disorder that can occur in people who have been exposed to traumatic life events.
Behaviors of this type express abnormality because they go against society's standards or norms
2. Reliving the trauma in flashbacks, dreams, and fantasy.
3. Victim becomes numb to the world and avoids stimuli that may revisit/remind them of the trauma.
4. Victim experiences survivor guilt in cases where others were killed while the victim of PTSD survived.
Antisocial personality disorder is when a person lacks a conscience. The individual may show little to no anxiety or guilt. Also, he or she may be impulsive in order to satisfy his or her needs. These people are also known as psychopaths.
Hypocondriasis: people become unnecessarily alarmed with any physical symptom they detect and are convinced they have/are going to have a serious illness.
-preoccupied with their health
-any physical change indicates a serious illness to hypochondriacs
-typically work themselves up to the point of seeing a physician
APD patients are considered one of the most interpersonally destructive and emotionally harmful individuals.
males out number females 3:1
you will often see "psychopaths" working in fields such as politics where there isn't much sincerity or emotion shown.
Someone with APD will act selfishly, callously, and impulsively. You would also notice instability and social deviance in their behavior.
Pain Disorder: people experience intense pain that is either out of proportion to whatever medical condition they might have or for which no physical basis can be found
-minor injury may e portrayed as extremely painful
-people with pain disorder often misuse pain killers, make excuses in order to stay home from work or school because of their "pain", cause marital and interpersonal disruption, and frequently use the health care system.
Conversion Disorder: sudden occurrence of serious neurological symptoms such as blindness, loss of sensation, and paralysis.
-electrophysiological recordings and brain imaging say that sensory and motor pathways are intact, but symptoms still occur
-la belle indifference: strange lack of concern for symptoms
-complaints are impossible
-glove anesthesia: loss of sensation below the wrist
Psychogenic Amnesia: a person responds to a stressful event with extensive but selective memory loss
-some may not remember anything about their past
-some may not recall specific events or instances, people, or places
-cognitive, language, and motor skills remain intact

Psychogenic Fugue: person loses all sense of personal identity, gives up his or her customary life, wanders to a new faraway location, and establishes a new identity
-typically triggered by a severely stressful event/trauma
-may last a few moments, a few hours, a few days, even a few years
-adolescent runaways may have this disorder
-ends when the person recovers their identity, "Wakes up". They feel as though they are in a strange place and under strange circumstances.
Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID): Multiple Personality Disorder. Two or more separate personalities coexist in the same person.
-host personality (primary personality) presents itself more often than others
-each personality has its own set of memories and behaviors
-each personality may or may not know about the existence of other personalities
-personalities can differ in age and gender

There are two fundamental motives for committing suicide:
1. the desire to end one's life
2. to manipulate others into doing what the suicidal person wants.
The biggest warning sign of potential suicide is openly talking about taking one's own life. Many people believe that this is just a cry for attention but more often than not, the individual WILL attempt suicide.
Dissociative Disorders: Involve a breakdown of normal personality integration, resulting in significant actions in memory or identity.
other warning signs:
substance use/abuse
expressing feelings of a hopeless future
taking unusual risks
giving away treasured belongings
isolating themselves from others
Schizophrenia: Includes severe disturbances in thinking, speech, perception, emotion, and behavior

-disorganized language
-speech may include strange words
-language may be based on rhymes and other associations
1. Directly ask the person if they have considered hurting themselves or ending their life.
2. Provide social support and empathy. Don't be afraid to talk about the problem in their life and try to help them cope.
3. Help the person see their problem with a wider perspective. Also, talk about positive possibilities of the future.
4. Stay with the person and seek professional help. In large cities, there is usually a center that provides a 24 hour service. These centers can be found in the suicide or crisis section of the telephone book.
-disorganized thoughts become more pronounced, and unwanted thoughts move into consciousness
-hallucinations: false perceptions that have a compelling sense of reality
-auditory(Most common), visual, and tactile

-schizophrenics typically show lack of emotion or exhibit emotion.
-positive symptoms: showing emotions, hallucinations, delusions, and disordered speech and thinking
-positive because this shows normal processes
-negative symptoms: absence of normal reactions (lack of emotional expression, loss of motivation, absence of speech)
Paranoid schizophrenia is a person who thinks there is constantly someone out there to harm him or her, or thinks they are enormously important. This person would feel suspicion, anxiety, or anger.
Disorganized schizophrenia is a person who is confused and incoherent. Often times these people are considered child-like and have inappropriate responses to situations. Also, this person would have bad hygiene, bad social skills, and bad self-care. This would cause for them to need another person to help them function.
-blunt effect: manifesting less sadness, joy, ad anger than most people
-flat effect: showing little to no emotion at all
-inappropriate effect: showing emotion inappropriately, smiling when uncomfortable or in pain, crying when happy, scared when complimented etc.
Catatonic schizophrenia is a person who displays muscular rigidity and sudden outbursts of agitated excitement. These people are not only a threat to themselves but to others. They may seem oblivious to reality at one point and showing extreme emotion the next.
Undifferentiated schizophrenia is assigned to people who exhibit one or more symptoms of each other subtype.
Autism: long-term disorder characterized by extreme unresponsiveness to others, poor communication skills, and highly repetitive and rigid behavior patterns.
-typically appears in the first 3 years of life (unresponsiveness, lack of interest in others)
-life long disorder
-many cannot lead independent lives in adulthood
-over 2/3 of Autistic people have and IQ below 70
-the rest have average to above-average intelligence
-highest functioning people with Autism have problems with communication, restricted interests in activities, and difficulty relating to other people.
Biological Basis:
-may be 4 to 6 genes directly linked to autism, and 20 to 30 others that contribute to a lesser degree
-genes may differ between boys and girls
-200 times more likely to see siblings that both have autism than to see (Identical twins are most likely to both have the disorder)
-no single gene, multiple genes that interact
-relatives of autistic children show
characteristics that parallel autism,
such as narrow/specialized
interests and "Aloofness"
Research has shown that identical twins have a concordance rate of about 40% when it comes to anxiety, and fraternal twins only have a 4% concordance rate.
61% of the population variance in panic disorder is genetically influenced; 44% of the agoraphobia variance is genetically influenced.
It is believed that low levels of GABA (gamma-aminobutyric acid) in arousal areas can cause some people to have nervous systems that are highly reactive and produce anxiety responses to stressors.
Reliability: a diagnosis may not be considered reliable if the person diagnosing them has a skewed/ biased opinion (homosexuality, women's rights etc.)
Women are more likely to exhibit anxiety disorders than men. This can start as early as age 7, leading us to believe that there is a sex-linked predisposition for anxiety disorders.
-heritability is between .40 and .50 for antisocial behavior in children, adolescents, an aults
-criminal rate was twice as high in children who were adopted with biological fathers that had a criminal record rather than in children who's biological father did not have a criminal record
Two Behavioral Clusters
1. selfishness, callousness, and interpersonal manipulation
2. impulsiveness, instability, and social deviance
Border-line personality disorder is a collection of symptoms characterized by serious instability in behavior, emotion, identity, and interpersonal relationships.
People with BPD often have unstable, intense personal relationships. They also experience chronic feelings of anger, loneliness, emptiness, and loss of personal identity.
These people engage in running away, promiscuity, drug abuse, binge eating, and suicide attempts that trigger a "saving" response from others in their lives.
-specific genes are still unknown
-the closer the relative a person is to someone with schizophrenia, the more likely the person is to develop the disorder in their lifetime.
-Identical twins show a higher concordance rate than fraternal twins in developing schizophrenia
-adoption studies show a higher concordance rate with bilogical parents than adoptive

Considered the most difficult patients to treat because of clingyness, irrational anger, and manipulative suicide threats.
-neurodegenerative hypothesis: destruction of neural tissue can cause schizophrenia
-brain atrophy: general loss or deterioration of neurons in the cerebral cortex and limbic system
-atrophy typically influences brain regions that affect cognitive processes and emotion.
- MRI's of the Thalamus (the part of the brain that receives and then delivers sensory input to various parts of the brain) reveal abnomalities
-Dopamine Hypothesis: Dopamine may play a role in schizophrenia, the symptoms of schizophrenia-particularly positive symptoms- are produced by overactivity of the dopamine system in areas of the brain that regulate emotional expression, motivate behavior, and cognitive function.
-Schizophrenics have more dopamine receptors on neuron membranes than people without schizophrenia
- these receptors are overactive

Psychoanalytic explanation:
how the ego's defense mechanisms deal with the anxiety decides what type of disorder the person has.
obsessions & compulsions are ways of handling anxiety.
generalized anxiety&panic attacks occur when a person isn't strong enough to control the anxiety but they are strong enough to hide the underlying conflict.
Cognitive explanation:
stress the role of maladaptive thought patterns and beliefs in anxiety disorders.
believe that some demands are actual threats.
play a large role in panic disorders.
panic attacks are triggered by misinterpretations of normal anxiety symptoms.
thinks a heart attack is about to happen which creates more anxiety.
telling a panic patient that it isn't a heart attack, it is just a little anxiety will help them and reduce panic attacks.
Hannah McGinnis, Samantha Labens, Bryar Grondin
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