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Andre Lecours

PERSONALITY DISORDERS  Antisocial Personality Disorder It is characterized by a failure to conform to standards of decency; repeated lying and stealing; a failure to sustain lasting, loving relationships; low tolerance of boredom; a complete lack of guilt.  Description The adult forms antisocial behaviour include inability to sustain consistent work behaviour; lack of ability to function as a responsible parent; repeated criminal activity; inability to maintain enduring attachment to a sexual partner; volatility and violence; failure to honour financial obligations; impulsiveness and failure plan ahead; habitual lying or use of aliases; and consistent reckless or drunken driving. Psychopaths do not easily learn adaptive behaviour from experience and tend to continue getting in trouble throughout their lives.  Possible Causes o Physiological Causes and Learning. Psychopaths show less reactivity in emotional situations and their speech tends to be emotionless and very monotone. As well, they have poor learning skills in avoiding aversive stimuli. o Genetic Causes. These people often come from grossly disturbed families that contain alcoholics and other psychopaths. o Environmental Causes—Parenting. Children whose parents ignore them or who leave them unsupervised for prolonged periods develop patterns of misconduct and delinquency. o Cognitive Causes. Children who have conduct problems tend to view their environments differently from well-adjusted children. They perceive the world as hostile and interpret others’ actions as aggressive and threatening. PSYCHOACTIVE SUBSTANCES USE DISORDERS They are mental disorders that are characterized by addiction to drugs or by abuse of drugs. They include psychoactive substance dependence (addiction) and psychoactive substance abuse.  Description  Possible Causes o Genetic and Physiological Causes Not everyone is equally likely to become addicted to a drug. There are only two possible sources of individual differences in any characteristic: heredity and environment. Raised in a poor environment can play a role. Genetics doesn’t play a major role in alcoholism but does in other drugs such as cocaine and heroin. o Cognitive Causes Cooper, Russell, and George (1988) argued that people develop patterns of heavy drug use because of what they believe about the personal benefits of using drugs perceived positive effects. The influence of alcohol or other drugs provides an escape from any negative feelings and the relief negatively reinforces the use of drugs. However, this effect is temporary. SCHIZOPHRENIC DISORDERS  Description Schizophrenia—a group of psychological disorders involving distortions of thought, perception, and emotion; bizarre behaviour; and social withdrawal—is a problem of enormous proportions. It is characterized by two categories of symptoms, positive and negative. Positive symptoms are those that make themselves known by their presence. These symptoms include thought disorders—pattern of disorganized, irrational thinking (most important symptom) — hallucinations, and delusions. Delusions (second positive symptom) are beliefs that are contrary to fact and are readily identifiable in the context of mental illness and tend to appear in three forms: delusions of persecution—false beliefs that others are plotting and conspiring against one—, delusions of grandeur—are false beliefs in ones power and importance (e.g. feeling that they are god)—and delusion of control—related to delusions of persecution, the person believe that he or she is begin controlled by others by radars or satellites (e.g. like that hippie you help out in GTA: San Andreas). The third positive symptom is hallucinations—perceptions of stimuli that are not actually present and can involve any of the senses and
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