Introduction to Psychology – Lecture 6
October 27, 2011
• Definition: involves severe disturbances in thought that affect perceptual, social and
emotional processes. The symptoms are delusions, deterioration of adaptive behaviour,
hallucinations, disturbed emotion and social isolation.
Subtypes of Schizophrenic Disorders
Paranoid Delusion of persecution and grandeur. The
patient is anxious, angry and argumentative.
Disorganized Severe deterioration of adaptive behaviour,
childlike behaviour, social withdrawal,
Catatonic Remains motionless, lack of activity, largely
mute, odd expressions on the face.
Undifferentiated Mixture of symptoms.
• Having schizophrenia increases the risk for developing an alcohol/drug problem,
physical illness (because of inactive lifestyle and side effects of medications) and
Etiology of Schizophrenic Disorders (Causes)
• Genetic vulnerability, neurochemical factor, structural brain abnormalities (such as
enlarged brain ventricles)
• Neurodevelopmental hypothesis: disruptions in the normal maturation process of the
brain during pre-natal development or during birth, causing neurological damage.
• Stress: high stress may serve to precipitate a schizophrenic disorder in someone who is
• Disorders: marked by episodic emotional disturbances of varied kinds that may disrupt
physical, perceptual, social and thought process:
- Depressive disorder: persistent feelings of sadness, depressed mood most of the
day (almost every day), loss of interest, insomnia, fatigue, loss of ability to think/concentrate, indecisiveness, feelings of worthlessness and guilt and suicidal
thoughts. Very common.
- Bipolar disorder: alternating periods of mania and depression, become hyperactive
and may go days without sleep.
Etiology of Mood Disorders (Causes)
• Genetic vulnerability (heredity creates a predisposition to mood disorders by making
abnormal levels of norepinephrine and serotonin.