Abnormal Psychology. Psychological Disorders. Patterns of thoughts, feelings or behaviors that are deviant , distressful and dysfunctional May vary with culture and across time Exp: 1952 - 1973: Homosexuality was classified as a an illness.
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Psychological Disorders • Patterns of thoughts, feelings or behaviors that are deviant, distressful and dysfunctional • May vary with culture and across time • Exp: 1952 - 1973: Homosexuality was classified as a an illness
Are classified by the DSM-IV-TR: Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders • Uses a process known as multiaxial diagnosis which includes five axes: • Axis 1: Clinical disorders – depression and anxiety disorers • Axis 2: Personality disorders – antisocial behavior, mental retardation • Axis 3: General medical conditions – diabetes • Axis 4: Psychosocial and environmental problems – death of family member, loss of job • Axis 5: Global assessment of a person’s overall level of functioning from 1 (serious attempt at suicide) to 100 (happy, productive, many interests
Theories of Abnormal Behavior • The psychoanalytic perspective • Views mental disorders as the product of intrapsychic conflicts among the id, ego and superego • In order to protect itself, the ego represses psychic conflicts into the unconscious • Conflicts result from unresolved traumatic experiences that took place in childhood • The humanist perspective • Looks to a person’s feelings, self-esteem and self-concept for causes of mental behavior • Believe behavior is the result of choices we make in struggling to find meaning in life
Theories of Abnormal Behavior -cont- • The cognitive perspective • Focuses on faulty, illogical and negative ways of thinking • Maladaptive thoughts lead to misperceptions and misinterpretations of events and social interactions • The behavioral perspective • Stresses that abnormal behavior is learned • Focus on how a behavior was reinforced and rewarded • The biological perspective • Many psychological disorders are caused by hormonal or neurotransmitter imbalances, differences in brain structure and inherited predispositions
Anxiety Disorders • Characterized by distressing, persistent anxiety or maladaptive behaviors that reduce anxiety • Five Types: • Generalized anxiety disorder - person is unexplainably and continually tense and uneasy • Can lead to chronic fatigue and irritability • Affects twice as many women as men • Panic disorder - person experiences sudden episodes of intense dread or anxiety • Accompanied by pounding heart, rapid breathing, sudden dizziness and lightheadedness
Anxiety Disorders -cont- • Five Types -cont- • Phobias - an irrational fear causes a person to avoid some object, activity or situation
Top Ten Fears, Men and Women Combined • Fear of snakes • Fear of being buried alive • Fear of heights • Fear of being bound or tied up • Fear of drowning • Fear of public speaking • Fear of hell • Fear of cancer • Fear of tornados • Fear of fire
Top 5 Fears of Men Top 5 Fears of Women Top Five Fears of Men and Women • Fear of being buried alive • Fear of heights • Fear of snakes • Fear of drowning • Fear of public speaking • Fear of snakes • Fear of being bound or tied up • Fear of being buried alive • Fear of heights • Fear of public speaking
Anxiety Disorders -cont- • Five Types -cont- • Obsessive-compulsive disorder - characterized by unwanted repetitive thoughts (obsessions) and /or actions (compulsions) • Obsessive thoughts often lead to compulsive behaviors • Nightline segment
Obsessions v. Compulsions • Example: • Obsession: A young woman is continuously terrified by the thought that cars might careen onto the sidewalk and run her over. • Compulsion: She always walks as far from the street pavement as possible and wears red clothes so she will be immediately visible to an out of control car. • Example: • Obsession: A woman cannot rid herself of the thought that she might accidently leave her gas stove turned on, causing her house to explode. • Compulsion: Every day she feels the irresistible urge to check the stove exactly 10 times before leaving for work.
Anxiety Disorders -cont- • Five Types -cont- • Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) - characterized by haunting memories, nightmares, social withdrawal, jumpy anxiety and/or insomnia that last 4+ weeks after a traumatic experience • Can lead to depression, uncontrollable crying, edginess and an inability to concentrate
Understanding Anxiety Disorders • Learning perspective • Fear conditioning – use of stimulus generalization and reinforcement • Observational learning – we learn fear by observing the fears of others • Biological perspective • Natural selection – we naturally fear threats faced by our ancestors • Genes – some people seem more predisposed to anxiety than others • The brain
Somatoform Disorders • Characterized by physical complaints or conditions which are caused by psychological factors • Hypochondriasis - people interpret normal sensations (headache, stomach cramp) as symptoms of a dreaded disease • Conversion disorder – marked by paralysis, blindness, deafness or other loss of sensation with no discernible physical cause
Dissociative Disorders • Disorders in which a person appears to experience a sudden loss of memory or change in identity, often in response to a stressful situation • Person’s conscious awareness is said to “dissociate” (become separated) from painful memories, thoughts and feelings • Dissociative identity disorder - 2+ distinct identities seem to alternately control the person’s behavior • Some question whether this disorder exists • Dissociative amnesia – characterized by partial or total inability to recall past experiences and important information • Usually in response to traumatic events or very stressful situations • Dissociative fugue – characterized by suddenly and inexplicably leaving home and taking on a new identity with no memory of a former life
Mood Disorders • General characteristics – serious, persistent disturbances in a person’s emotions • Two forms • Major depressive disorder • At least 5 signs of depression (lethargy, feelings of worthlessness, loss of interest in family, friends and activities) last 2 or more weeks and are not caused by drugs or a medical condition • Bipolar disorder • Alternating between depression and mania - hyperactive, wildly optimistic state
Mood Disorders -cont- • Depression • Is accompanied by many behavioral and cognitive changes • Is widespread • Women are more than 2xs as vulnerable than men • Most major episodes self-terminate • Is often preceded by stressful events • Is striking earlier w/each new generation and is affecting more people
Common Characteristics of Suicidal People • Unendurable psychological pain • Frustrated psychological needs • Security, achievement, trust, friendship • The search for a solution • An attempt to end consciousness • Helplessness and hopelessness • Constriction of options • See only two alternatives: total solution or total cessations • Ambivalence • Communication of intent • Departure • Lifelong coping patterns • How did person handle problems in the past?
Understanding Mood Disorders • The biological perspective • Genetic influence – the heritability of major depression is estimated at 35-40% • The brain – studies have found less activity in the brain during slowed-down depressive states and more activity during periods of mania • Biochemical influences – norepinephrine and serotonin are both reduced during depression • The social-cognitive perspective • Self-defeating beliefs • Negative explanatory style – depressed people tend to explain bad events in terms that are stable, global and internal
Schizophrenia • Group of disorders characterized by disorganized and delusional thinking, disturbed perceptions and inappropriate emotions and actions • Characteristic symptoms: • Delusional beliefs – bizarre or farfetched belief that continues in spite of competing contradictory evidence • Hallucinations – false or distorted perception that seems vividly real to the person experiencing it • Disorganized speech and thought – creating artificial words and jumbling words and phrases together • Emotional and behavioral disturbances – range from exaggerated and inappropriate reactions to a flat affect, showing no emotional or facial expressions
Incidence of Different Types of Hallucinations of Schizophrenia
Schizophrenia -cont- • Affects 1 in 100 people • Typically begins in late adolescence or early adulthood • Sometimes develops suddenly • When it develops slowly, recovery is doubtful • Positive symptoms - hallucinations, talking in a disorganized/deluded way, inappropriate laughter, tears or rage • Negative symptoms - toneless voices, expressionless faces, or mute, rigid bodies
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Schizophrenia -cont- • Causes • Excess of dopamine in the brain • Abnormal brain activity • Low birth weight/oxygen deprivation during delivery • Maternal viral infection - risk increases if • There was a flu epidemic during fetal development • Born in a densely populated area • Born in the winter/spring months • Mother is sick w/influenza during pregnancy • Genetics • 1/10 chance of schizophrenia among those w/sibling or parent w/disorder • ½ if sibling is an identical twin (6/10 if they shared a placenta)
Personality Disorders • Disruptive, inflexible and enduring behavior patterns that impair one’s social functioning • Usually become evident during adolescence or early adulthood • Antisocial personality disorder - exhibits a lack of conscience for wrongdoing • Narcissistic personality disorder - person has a strong need to be admired, large sense of self-importance and demonstrates lack of insight into the feeling of others • Believe they should receive special privileges
Percentage of Americans Reporting Selected Psychological Disorders in the Past Year
Other Facts • About ½ of Americans will meet the criteria for DSM-IV disorder sometime in their lifetime • By age 75, the lifetime probability of • Anxiety disorder (including phobias) = 32% • Mood disorders (including depression) = 28% • Impulse control disorders = 25% • Alcohol abuse = 15% • Drug abuse = 9% • Median age of onset is much earlier for anxiety (11 yrs) and impulse-control (11 yrs) disorders than for substance abuse (20 yrs) and mood disorders (30 yrs) • ½ of all cases start by 14 yrs and ¾ by 24 yrs • Rates of mental illness have flattened in the past 15 yrs • 41% of those having a disorder went for treatment in the prior year • Up from 25% ten years ago • Younger adults are more likely to seek prompt care