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Core Concept 12-1. • Psychological disorders are seen as diseases by the medical model, while psychology prefers an interaction of nature and nurture. Psychopathology.

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Core Concept 12-1

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core concept 12 1
Core Concept 12-1

• Psychological disorders are seen as diseases by the medical model, while psychology prefers an interaction of nature and nurture.

  • Pattern of emotions, behaviors, or thoughts inappropriate to the situation and leading to either personal distress or inability to function effectively
  • Also called:
    • mental illness
    • mental disorder
    • psychological disorder
normal v abnormal
Normal v. Abnormal

• Telling the difference not easy.

• Abnormality is relative and varies with both historical time and culture.

  • Severe psychological disorders easier to identify.
  • False sensory experiences
  • Example: hearing the voice of God giving commands to behave in bizarre fashion
  • Disordered thinking involving persistent false beliefs
  • Examples: persecution or grandiosity
severe emotions
Severe Emotions
  • Depression
  • Mania
  • Lack of all emotions
continuum of psychopathology

Continuum of Psychopathology


None Mild Moderate Severe

neurosis v psychosis
Neurosis v. Psychosis
  • Outdated but useful concepts
  • Neurosis--unhappy and ineffective but not out of touch with reality or dangerously ill.
  • Psychosis--profound disturbance in perception, rational thinking, and emotions.
history of mental illness
History of Mental Illness
  • Ancient World--mind possessed by demons and spirits.
  • Hippocrates (400 B.C.)
    • abnormal behavior due to physical causes
    • began the medical model of mental illness
    • Imbalance of four body humors
  • Middle Ages--devil and witchcraft again
  • Medical model returns in 18th century
ancient world
Ancient World
  • Explanation of psychopathology- mind possessed by demons and spirits
  • Psychopathology due to physical causes
  • Began the medical model of mental illness
  • Imbalance of body “humors”
middle ages
Middle Ages
  • Devil and witchcraft again used to explain mental illness
  • “Cure” was torture--drive out the devil.
  • A fungus that infects rye grass
  • Contains lysergic acid (like LSD)
  • Hallucinogenic
  • Salem witches likely affected by ergot
medical model
Medical Model
  • Returns in 18th Century
  • Diseases of mind have medical causes
  • Led to sweeping reforms in treatment of mental illness
insane asylums
Insane Asylums
  • Humane treatment based on rest, contemplation, and simple work.
  • Became overcrowded warehouses
problems with medical model
Problems with Medical Model
  • “doctor-knows-all” leads to passive patients
  • over reliance on drug therapy
  • no increase in coping skills
psychological models
Psychological Models

• Behavioral-abnormal behaviors learned

  • Cognitive-abnormal behaviors influenced by how people think of themselves and others
  • Social-abnormal behavior occurs in a social contex
  • Biological-genetic factors and brain dysfunction contribute
indicators of abnormality
Indicators of Abnormality
  • distress
  • maladaptiveness
  • irrationality
  • unpredictable behavior
  • unconventional behavior
core concept 12 2
Core Concept 12-2

• The DSM-IV, the most widely used system, classifies disorders by their mental and behavioral symptoms.

classification of disorders
Classification of Disorders
  • Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-Fourth Edition (DSM-IV)
  • Classifies disorders by mental and behavioral symptoms
  • Widely accepted
  • More than 300 disorders
classes of disorders
Classes of Disorders
  • Mood Disorders
  • Anxiety Disorders
  • Schizophrenic Disorders
  • Personality Disorders
  • Many others
mood disorders
Mood Disorders
  • Abnormal disturbances in emotion or mood, also called affective disorders.
  • Major Depression
  • Bipolar Disorder
  • Lifetime risk of 5.2% of having a depressive episode.
  • Major Depression--extreme sadness, loss of enjoyment, sleep and appetite problems, loss of energy, difficulty concentrating, thoughts of death.
  • Dysthymia--mild depression
bipolar disorder
Bipolar Disorder
  • Alternating periods of mania and depression.
  • Manic Phase--euphoric, energetic, hyperactive, talkative, and excited.
  • Usually responds well to medication.
  • A psychotic disorder involving distortions in thoughts, perceptions, and emotions.
  • Incidence of 1% with first episode almost always in late adolescence or early adulthood.
  • State psychiatric hospitals--40% of patients have schizophrenia.
disorganized type
Disorganized Type
  • Incoherent speech
  • Hallucinations
  • Delusions
  • Bizarre behavior.
paranoid type
Paranoid Type
  • Delusions of persecution or grandiosity
  • Hallucinations
  • No incoherence
  • Withdrawn
  • Flat affect
personality disorders
Personality Disorders
  • Not a mental disorder
  • A long-standing personality pattern
  • Leads to maladpative behavior, disrupted social relationships, poor impulse control.
  • Very chronic, pervasive, inflexible.
  • Narcissistic--feels entitled, needs constant attention or admiration.
  • Borderline--very unstable patterns.
  • Antisocial--pattern of irresponsible behavior and lack of conscience.
core concept 12 3
Core Concept 12-3

• Ideally, accurate diagnoses lead to proper treatments, but diagnoses may also become labels that depersonalize individuals and ignore the social and cultural contexts in which their problems arise.

labeling people
Labeling People
  • Ideally,diagnosis may become a label with negative consequences--a stigma.
  • Rosenhan Study of pseudopatients
insanity plea
Insanity Plea
  • A legal not psychological concept--person found not guilty by reason of insanity is not held responsible for their criminal conduct.
  • Myths about the insanity plea abound.
  • In Texas, a severe mental disorder that prevented the person from knowing right from wrong.