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Lecture 1

PSYC 270 Lecture Notes - Lecture 1: Relational Psychoanalysis, Defence Mechanisms, Psychoanalytic Theory

10 pages15 viewsSpring 2017

Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYC 270
Professor
Rachel Kramer
Lecture
1

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Chapter 2: Theories and Treatment of Abnormality
1. Three General Approaches to understanding psychological disorders
a. Sociocultural- views disorders as the result of environmental conditions and cultural
norms
b. Biological- views disorders as the result of abnormal genes or neurobiological
dysfunction
i. Used to view disorders as either absent or present
ii. Now there is a continuum perspective on abnormality
c. Psychological- views disorders as result of thinking processes, personality styles, and
conditioning
i. Also moving towards continuum approach
1. The damage Gage suffered caused of his brain to not function properly
2. Three causes of abnormality on which biological approaches often focus; these all can influence
one another
a. Brain dysfunction- one of three causes of abnormality on which biological approaches
often focus
i. People like Gage hose rais’ do ot futio properl ofte sho proles i
psychological functioning
ii. 3 Main Regions of the Brain
1. Hindbrain
a. Includes all structures located in the hind (posterior) of the
brain
b. Closest to the spinal cord
c. Crucial for basic life functions
d. Contains medulla, which helps control breathing and reflexes
e. Pons- important for attentiveness and the timing of sleep
f. Reticular Formation- a network of neurons that control arousal
and attention to stimuli
g. Cerebellum- concerned primarily with the coordination of
movement
2. Midbrain
a. Located in the middle of the brain
b. Contains superior colliculus and inferior colliculus, which relay
sensory info and control movement
c. Contains substantia nigra- crucial part of pathway that regulates
responses to reward
3. Forebrain
a. Contains these structures
i. Thalamus- directs incoming info from sense receptors
ii. Hypothalamus- small structure just below the thalamus
that regulates eating, drinking, and sexual behavior
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iii. Cerebral Cortex- the area of the brain that was
daaged i Phieas Gage’s aidet
iv. Limbic system- a set of structures that regulate many
instinctive behaviors, such as reactions to stressful
events and eating and sexual behavior
1. Amygdala- a structure of the limbic system that
is critical in emotions such as fear
2. Hippocampus- a part of the limbic system that
plays a role in memory
iii. Can result from injury, such as car accident, and from diseases that cause brain
deterioration
b. Biochemical Imbalances
i. Contains neurotransmitters and hormones
1. Neurotransmitters- biochemicals that act as messengers carrying
impulses from one neuron, or nerve cell, to another in the brain and in
other parts of the nervous system
a. Each neuron has a cell body and dendrites (short branches off
the cell body)
i. Dendrites and cell body receive impulses
ii. Impulse travels down the slender AXON
iii. The impulse reaches the small swellings at the end of
the axon, called SYNAPTIC TERMINALS
iv. Impulse then stimulates release of neurotransmitters
v. Synaptic terminals do not actually touch adjacent
neurons, this slight gap is called the synaptic gap or
synapse
vi. The neurotransmitter is released into the synapse and
then binds to special receptors
b. The amount of neurotransmitter can be affected by two
processes
i. Process of reuptake- occurs when initial neuron
releasing the transmitter into the synapse reabsorbs the
transmitter
ii. Degradation- occurs when receiving neuron releases an
enzyme into the synapse that breaks down the
transmitter into other biochemicals; also occurs when
releasing neuron provides an enzyme
iii. Can also be affected by the number or sensitivity of
receptors
c. Types of Neurotransmitters
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i. Serotonin- travels through many areas of the brain;
plays role in emotional well-being and dysfunctional
behaviors
ii. Dopamine- has to do with experience of reinforcements
or rewards; affected by substances; important in muscle
systems
iii. Norepinephrine- produced mainly by neurons in brain
stem; too much causes slowing psychological process,
too little causes depression
iv. Gama- Aminobutryic Acid (GABA)- inhibits actions of
other neurotransmitters
ii. The Endocrine System
1. Function- system of glands that produce chemicals, called hormones,
which are released directly into the blood
a. Hormone- carries messages throughout the body, potentially
affetig a perso’s ood, leel of eerg, ad reatio to
stress
2. Major Gland of this system includes the Pituitary gland
a. AKA Master Gland, it produces the largest number of different
hormones and controls the secretion of other endocrine glands;
lies just below the hypothalamus
b. Relationship between pituitary and hypothalamus shows
interactions between endocrine and central nervous systems
3. Mood Disorders and Suicide
a. Some theories say that these disorders result from
i. Dysregulation (malfunctioning) of a system called the
hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (OR HPA AXIS)
1. People with dysregulated HPA axis may have
abnormal physiological reactions to stress that
makes it more difficult for them to cope with
stress, resulting in symptoms of anxiety and
depression
c. Genetic Abnormalities
i. Behavioral genetics- the study of genetics of personality and abnormality are
concerned with 2 inquiries
1. To what extent are behaviors inherited
2. What are the processes by which genes affect behavior
ii. Polygenic- multi-gene process that takes multiple genetic abnormalities coming
together in one individual to create a specific disorder
1. Examples include diabetes, epilepsy, cleft palate, heart disease
3. Treatments
a. Drug Therapies
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