Psychological Disorders

Chapter 18
Pages 409 - 431
Criteria used to determine
Psychological Disorder
 Behaviors, patterns or mental processes that cause
serious personal problems or suffering
 Exaggeration of certain behaviors or mental
Psychological Disorders
 Degree to which is average or typical or behavior or
mental process
 Example: if somebody rearranges their locker after every
single period, is that abnormal….?
 Behavior impairs an individual’s ability to function
adequately in everyday life
 Examples:
Alcohol abuse
Abusive to others
Emotional Discomfort
 Suffering helplessness, hopelessness, and
worthlessness, often suffering from depression or
 Often loose interest in activity they used to enjoy
Socially Unacceptable Behavior
 Behavior that violates a society’s accepted norms
 Culture-bound syndrome- cluster of symptoms that
define or describe an illness, often the behavior is seen
differently by different cultures
Example: banging one’s head in Middle East culture person is
seen as being possessed by an evil spirit or jinn, in the United
States seen as a psychological disorder
What are exceptions? Or norms that have changed over time?
 Example: during the years of slavery a runaway slave was seen
as someone who was mad or crazy, of course now it seems
completely understandable.
Maladaptive Emotional
Find a partner: interview one of the following professionals
Police officer
Ask question: Does the insanity plea allow people to “get away” with crimes?
Diagnostic and Statistical Manual
of Mental Disorders…. DSM
 American Psychiatric Association
 Used as the guidelines to determine if somebody has a
mental illness
 The following slides are all the disorders that are listed
in the DSM
Anxiety disorder
 DSM lists the following as Anxiety disorders
 Phobic disorder
 Panic disorder
 Generalized anxiety disorder
 Obsessive-compulsive disorder
 Stress disorders
 Intense irrational fear of something
 What are your phobias?
 Social Phobia: intense fear of social situation and having
people make fun of you or feeling humiliated
Do you know anyone with this phobia?
Panic Disorder and Agoraphobia
 Panic attack- characteristic of these disorders,
shortness of breath, dizziness, rapid heart rate,
trembling or shaking, sweating, choking etc. can last a
few minutes to several hours.
 Agoraphobia- fear of being in places in which escape
would be impossible for difficult
What might be some examples?
50-80% of people with phobic disorder are one of the above
Both of these disorders can lead to avoidance behaviors
How could this be disruptive for daily life?
Role Play!
 With a partner take about 5 minutes to create a
scenario demonstrating a simple phobia, social
phobia, panic disorder, or agoraphobia.
 Include in your skit avoidance behavior to mask or
manage the fear
 Be ready to discuss ways in which anxiety disorders
affect people’s work and social life.
Generalized Anxiety Disorder
 Excessive or unrealistic worry about life circumstance
that lasts for more then 6 months
 Most common anxiety disorder
 Often people with GAD have other anxiety disorders
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder
 Obsessions- unwanted thoughts or ideas that occur
over and over again (fear of somebody breaking into
the house)
 Compulsive- repetitive ritual behaviors, often
involving checking and/or cleaning something over
and over again (rechecking the locks on windows and
doors of the house a dozen times or more before can
Post-traumatic Stress Disorder
 Occurs have severe trauma: war, rape, child abuse, natural
disaster etc.
 Not everyone who experiences a trauma will develop this
 Flashbacks
 Nightmares
 Numbness of feeling
 Avoidance of situations related to trauma
 Difficulty sleeping, relaxing
Symptoms can start up to 6 months after trauma and last for years
Acute Stress disorder- similar to PTSD, but coming on sooner and
not lasting as long
Psychological Views on Anxiety
 Based on learning theorists ideas- if child picks up
spiders and adult freaks out then child learns to be
phobic (think classical and operant conditioning)
Biological views
 Born with disorders
 Example: if one identical twin shows disorder the other
has a 45% of developing the same
 Passed down through the gene pool, ancestors more
likely to survive and reproduce if they had fears of real
dangers, such as heights, snakes etc.
 What avoidance behaviors have you used to reduce
anxiety about a particular situation or object, explain
how facing the situation rather then avoiding might
help you overcome it?
Dissociative Disorder
 Do you sometimes space our during class?
 Do you sometimes miss a turn off because you were
thinking of something else?
 Do you get so involved in a book or show that you don’t
hear your name?
 If you answered “yes” to any or all of the questions you
have dissociated. Don’t worry you are not crazy! 
Dissociative Disorder
 People will remove themselves mentally from a
stressful/ traumatic situation to lesson the anxiety
 Sometimes people will lose their memory or identity
Dissociative Amnesia
 Forget the events surrounding a stressful/traumatic
 Can last a few days to years
 Not associated with head injury
 Common during war time or natural disasters
Dissociative Fugue
 Not only forgetting personal information and events,
but relocating and taking on a new identity
 When fugue ends the no longer remember being in
the fugue state
Dissociative Identity Disorder
 Multiple personality disorder (movie Sybil retells one
of the most extreme and famous cases of this)
Two or more personalities with in the same person
Each personality has different voice, personality, facial
Personalities control the individual when they are in
that state
Common in children who have experienced severe
Depersonalization Disorder
 Feelings of being outside body watching events going
on around you
 Again most often happens after traumatic or stressful
Explaining dissociative disorders
 psychoanalytic theory (Freud, Young)
 Believed person is trying to resist undesirable urges or
events from the past
 Learning Theory- people have learned to not think
about disturbing events as a way to avoid feelings of
guilt, shame, or pain
 No clear explanation as to the source for dissociative
True/False Quiz
 Fold sheet of paper in half (long ways)
 Write 10 true/false questions on dissociative disorders
on the left hand side of sheet
 Write the answer to each question on the same line on
the right hand of sheet
 Switch with class mate and have them take your quiz
Mood Disorders
 Extreme emotions that are not connected to “real”
event or situatation
 Depression- feelings of helplessness, hopelessness,
worthlessness, guilt, sadness
 Bipolar disorder- cycle of moods from depression to
manic (elated, hyper-active etc.)
Depression very common- every six months 8% of women and
4% of men will be diagnosed with depression…8 – 18% of
population will experience major depression in lifetime
Somatoform Disorders
 Psychological distress through physical symptoms
Depression with 5 out of 9
Persistent depressed mood for most of day
Loss of interest or pleasure in all activities
Significant weight loss or gain due to changes
Sleeping more or less than usual
Speeding up or slowing down of physical and emotional
Fatigue or loss of energy
Feelings of worthlessness or unfounded guilt
Reduced ability to concentrate or make meaningful
Recurrent thoughts of death or suicide
 Manic phase can be characterized by following:
 Inflated self-esteem
 Inability to sit still or sleep restfully
 Pressure to keep talking and switching from topic to
 Racing thoughts (referred to as “flight of ideas”)
 Difficulty concentrating
Theories on Mood Disorders
 Psychoanalytic (Freud)- loss of real or imagined loved
one as child, internalized feelings then directs as
 Learning Theorists- people learn helplessness makes
them prone to depression
 Cognitive Theorists- habitual style of explaining life
 Internal- may fault
 Stable- problem can not be changed
 Global- problem too big to solve
Biological explanation Mood
 20 – 25% of people with mood disorder has a family
member that also has it
 2 neurotransmitters: serotonin and noradrenalin if
deficient in either mood disorder, if both often
 Characterized with a loss of contact with reality
 symptoms
Thought disorders
Catatonic stupor
*estimated that 2 million people in us have schizophrenia
Paranoid schizophrenia
 Delusions/hallucinations- related to single theme
Disorganized schizophrenia
 Disorganized speech and thought can also have
hallucinations, but are more random and disorganized
then paranoid schizophrenia
Catatonic Schizophrenia
 Disturbance of movement, may hold very
uncomfortable position for hours even after hands and
legs swell
 Activity can slow to stupor or become very agitated
Psychoanalytic Explanation
 Overwhelming of ego by urges from id/ causing
intense conflict
Psychological Views
 Family environment can push/ “cause” schizophrenia,
such as a pushy, or critical parent
Biological Views
 Schizophrenic people have smaller frontal lobes then
normal brain, affects:
 Attention
 Memory
 Abstract thinking
 Language
 Suggested that difficulty forming pathways and
synopses in that part of brain
Biological continued
 Causes
 Heredity- 10% increased chance if one parent has/35 –
40% if both
 Complications during pregnancy- influenza (increased
risk if born in winter/flu season), maternal starvation
 Look at the Multifactorial model of Schizophrenia on
page 429 (copy it for your exam)
Personality Disorders
 Patterns of inflexible traits that disrupt social life/
work etc
 Enduring traits that become “part” of person’s
personality vs. psychological disorders which exhibit
episodes of illness, but can be distinguished from
person’s personality
Paranoid- suspicious, distrust others’ motives
Schizoid- detachment from social behavior
Schizotypal- acute discomfort in close relationships
Antisocial- no concern for others
Borderline- instability in interpersonal relationships and selfimage
Histrionic- excessive emotionality, need for attention
Narcissistic- Grandiosity, need for admiration, lack of empathy
Avoidant- social inhibition, feelings of inadequacy
Dependent- submissive, clinging
Obsessive-Compulsive- obsession with orderliness,
perfectionism, and control
 Psychoanalytic- lack of development of superego
(children rejected never develop sense of guilt)
 Learning Theorists- children learn from violent role
models, or anti-social role models
 Cognitive Theorists- see other people’s behavior as
threatening, use it to justify anti-social behaviors
 Biological- higher in individuals with parents who
have it/ differences in frontal part of lobe of the brain
which handles emotions

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