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Introduction to Psychology. Defining abnormal behaviour Diagnosis Mental Disorders. What is abnormal behaviour?.

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Introduction to psychology
Introduction to Psychology

  • Defining abnormal behaviour

  • Diagnosis

  • Mental Disorders

What is abnormal behaviour
What is abnormal behaviour?

  • Amy hasn’t been to work in two weeks. She has no physical problems but has trouble getting out of bed. She has little appetite and has lost 10 pounds in two weeks. She has no interest in things that she used to enjoy.

  • Mary masturbates in public on a regular basis. She does it so all can see.

  • Terry is a successful accountant in a good marriage. He wears silk panties to work. He dresses up in female attire when having sex with his wife. Both enjoy their lovemaking.

  • Lloyd appears to be in an altered state of consciousness. His eyes don’t focus and he is unresponsive. He is repeating the same statement over and over.

Dsm multi axial diagnosis
DSM Multi-axial Diagnosis

Axis I: all mental disorders (except)

Axis II: personality disorders & mental retardation

Axis III: physical disorders

Axis IV: psychosocial and environmental problems

Axis V: global assessment of functioning scale

Dsm diagnosis
DSM Diagnosis

Axis I: Bulimia Nervosa, purging subtype

Axis II: Borderline personality disorder

Axis III: Diabetes

Axis IV: unemployment, social isolation

ongoing family difficulties

Axis V: GAF: 40 (over last three months)

Anxiety vs fear
Anxiety vs. Fear

  • future-oriented

  • mood state

  • feeling that one cannot predict or control upcoming events

  • present-oriented

  • emotional alarm reaction to present danger

  • emergency “fight or flight” response

Criteria for a panic attack
Criteria for a Panic Attack

Discrete period of intense fear/discomfort in which at least 4 symptoms developed abruptly and reached a peak within 10 minutes

  • palpitations, pounding/racing heart

  • sweating

  • trembling/shaking

  • shortness of breath/smothering sensations

  • feeling of choking

  • chest pain/discomfort

  • nausea or abdominal distress

  • feeling dizzy, unsteady, faint or lightheaded

  • derealization or depersonalization

  • fear of losing control or going crazy

  • fear of dying

  • paresthesias (numbness or tingling sensations)

  • chills or hot flushes

The dsm iv anxiety disorders
The DSM-IV Anxiety Disorders

Panic Disorder with/without Agoraphobia

Specific Phobia

Social Phobia

Obsessive Compulsive Disorder (OCD)

Generalized Anxiety Disorder (GAD)

Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)

Panic disorder
Panic Disorder

  • recurrent, unexpected panic attacks

  • AND one month of concern about additional attacks

  • OR... worry about the implications of the attack or its consequences

  • OR... a significant change in behaviour related to the attacks


  • anxiety about being in places/situations from which escape might be difficult or embarrassing in the event of a panic attack

  • situations are avoided or endured with marked distress or anxiety about having a panic attack OR require the presence of a companion

Introduction to psychology

Typical Agoraphobic Situations

  • Shopping malls

  • Cars

  • Trains

  • Buses

  • Subways

  • Wide streets

  • Tunnels

  • Restaurants

  • Theatres

  • Supermarkets

  • Stores

  • Crowds

  • Planes

  • Elevators

  • Escalators

  • Waiting in line

  • Being far from home “out of safe zone”

Introduction to psychology

Specific Phobia

  • marked and persistent fear that is excessive or unreasonable, cued by a specific object or situation

  • exposure to the phobic stimulus almost invariably provokes an immediate anxiety response (e.g., a panic attack)

  • phobic situation/object is avoided or endured with intense anxiety and distress

Introduction to psychology

Specific Phobia - Types

1. Animal

2. Natural Environment (e.g., heights, water)

3. Blood-Injection-Injury Type

4. Situational (e.g., planes, elevators, driving)

5. Other (e.g., choking, vomiting)

Introduction to psychology

Social Phobia

  • marked and persistent fear of social or performance situations

  • situations involve exposure to unfamiliar people or to possible evaluation by others

  • individual fears that he/she may do something humiliating or embarrassing.

Obsessive compulsive disorder
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

  • recurrent and persistent obsessions and/or compulsions

  • symptoms cause marked distress

  • time consuming (more than 1 hour/day)

  • interfere significantly with person’s normal routine

Introduction to psychology


  • persistent and intrusive thoughts, impulses, images

  • inappropriate, cause marked anxiety or distress

  • person usually attempts to ignore or suppress them

  • ...OR neutralize them with some other thought or action


  • repetitive behaviors or mental acts

  • performed to prevent or reduce anxiety/distress, not to provide pleasure or gratification

Mood disorders

Mood Disorders

Lifetime prevalence rates of depressive disorders:

13% men

25% women

Lifetime prevalence rates of bipolar disorders:

less than 1% for men and women

15% complete suicide

Mood episodes
Mood Episodes

  • Major Depressive Episode

  • Manic Episode

  • Hypomanic Episode

  • Mixed Episode

1 major depressive episode
1. Major Depressive Episode

  • Depressed mood

  • Loss of interest (anhedonia)

  • Significant weight loss or gain

  • Insomnia or hypersomnia

  • Psychomotor agitation or retardation

  • Fatigue or loss of energy

  • Worthlessness or guilt

  • Diminished ability to concentrate, indecisiveness

2 manic episode
2. Manic Episode

- Abnormally and persistently elevated, expansive, or irritable mood

  • Inflated self-esteem and grandiosity

  • Requiring very little sleep

  • Talkativeness

  • Flight of ideas

  • Distractibiltiy

  • Psychomotor agitation

  • Buying sprees, sexual indiscretions, foolish business investments

3 hypomanic episode
3. Hypomanic Episode

Symptoms are milder than a Manic Episode

  • Less intense and last at least four days

    4. Mixed Episode

    Both a Major Depressive Episode and a Manic Episode nearly everyday for at least a one week period

Major depressive disorder
Major Depressive Disorder

  • One or more Major Depressive Episodes

  • No history of Manic, Hypomanic or Mixed Episodes

    Dysthymic Disorder

  • Less severe but more chronic than Major Depressive Disorder

  • Symptoms are milder but remain unchanged over long periods of time

Bipolar i disorder
Bipolar I Disorder

  • One or more Manic or Mixed Episodes

  • Often individuals have also had one or more Major Depressive Episodes

    Bipolar II Disorder

  • Presence (or history) of one or more Major Depressive Episodes

  • Presence (or history) of at least one Hypomanic Episode

  • There has never been a Manic Episode or a Mixed Episode

Cyclothymic disorder
Cyclothymic Disorder

  • Less severe but more chronic than Bipolar Disorder

  • Symptoms of hypomania and depression are milder but remain unchanged over long periods of time

Dsm iv specifiers
DSM-IV Specifiers

  • Chronic

  • Psychotic

  • Melancholic

  • Atypical

  • Catatonic

  • Postpartum Onset

  • Seasonal Pattern

  • Rapid Cycling Pattern

Somatoform dissociative disorders
Somatoform & Dissociative Disorders

  • Somatoform Disorders:

    • Hypochondriasis

    • Somatization Disorder

    • Conversion Disorder

    • Factitious Disorder

    • Body Dysmorphic Disorder

  • Dissociative Identity Disorder

Hypochondriasis dsm iv criteria
HypochondriasisDSM-IV Criteria

  • Preoccupation with the belief that one has a serious disease

  • The preoccupation persists despite medical evaluation and reassurance

  • Not delusional

  • Distress or impairment

  • Lasts at least 6 months

Somatization disorder
Somatization Disorder

  • History of many physical complaints beginning before age 30 that result in treatment being sought or significant impairment

  • Each of the following criteria must have been met:

    1. Four pain symptoms

    2. Two gastrointestinal symptoms

    3. One sexual or reproductive symptom

    4. One neurological symptom

Somatization disorder1
Somatization Disorder

  • Symptoms cannot be fully explained by a known medical condition

  • The symptoms are not intentionally produced or feigned

    Causes: unclear, anxiety, secondary gain

    Treatment: gatekeeper physician, work, treatment for anxiety and depression

Conversion disorder
Conversion Disorder

  • One or more symptoms or deficits affecting voluntary motor or sensory function that suggests a neurological or general medical condition

  • Preceded by a conflict or stressor

  • Not intentionally produced

  • Cannot be fully explained by a medical condition

  • Significant distress or impairment or warrants medical evaluation

Body dysmorphic disorder
Body Dysmorphic Disorder

  • Preoccupation with an imagined defect in appearance, or if a slight physical anomaly is present, the person’s concern is excessive

  • Significant distress or impairment

Dissociative identity disorder
Dissociative Identity Disorder

  • The presence of two or more distinct identities or personality states

  • At least two of these identities recurrently take control of the person’s behaviour

  • Inability to recall important personal information that is too excessive to be explained by forgetfulness

Dissociative identity disorder1
Dissociative Identity Disorder

  • Host Identity

  • Alternate Identities

  • Switch

  • Causes: abuse, neglect, iatrogenic, feigned

  • Treatment: skillful therapist, build a therapeutic alliance, ground rules, reintegration: process trauma & dissociative defenses, post integration therapy

Eating disorders
Eating Disorders

  • Females 10 x more likely to develop an eating disorder

  • Around 5% of young women will develop an eating disorder

  • Course and outcome of eating disorders is highly variable

  • Eating disorders are associated with serious complications, and have the highest mortality rate

Dsm iv diagnostic criteria for anorexia nervosa
DSM-IV Diagnostic criteria for Anorexia Nervosa

  • Low body weight

  • Fear of gaining weight or becoming fat

  • Weight-related self-evaluation, or denial of the seriousness of the low body weight

  • Amenorrhea



Dsm iv diagnostic criteria for bulimia nervosa
DSM-IV: Diagnostic criteria for Bulimia Nervosa

  • Binge eating

  • Inappropriate compensatory behavior

  • Both occur, at least 2/ week for 3 months

  • Weight-related self-evaluation



Physical complications

Menstrual Dysfunction



Tiredness, Lethargy


Hair Loss

Dental Problems

Electrolyte Abnormalities


Acute Gastric Dilation

Delayed Gastric Emptying


Swollen salivary gland

Kidney Dysfunction

Physical Complications

Psychological complications



Mood swings

Food Preoccupation

Social Isolation

Sleep Disturbances

Self-Esteem Deficits

Impulsive Behaviors

Psychological Complications


  • Delusions and Irrational thought

  • Deterioration of Adaptive Behaviors

  • Hallucinations

  • Disturbed Emotion

  • Paranoid, Catatonic, Disorganized, Undifferentiated

  • Positive vs. Negative symptoms

  • Chronic, resistant to treatment