PS280 Midterm: Etiology of Anxiety Disorders

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14 Aug 2019
School
Department
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Anxiety, OCD, Trauma Related Disorders
Three distinctive components of emotion:
(1) Physiological: changes in autonomic nervous system
(2) Cognitive: alterations in consciousness (ex attention levels), thoughts while experiencing emotion
(3) Behavioural: specific behavioural responses tend to be consequences of certain emotions
-all three are highly related and affect each other
Anxiety: affective state; individual feels threatened by potential occurence of future negative event
-anxiety in general is “future oriented”
Fear: more primitive emotion that occurs in response to real or perceived current threat (fight or flight)
-fear is “present oriented”
Panic: similar to fear but fear is an emotional response to an objective, current, and identifiable threat
and panic is extreme fear reaction that is triggered even though there is nothing to be afraid of
Historical Perspective:
-one of earliest examples of fear is in Hippocrates' writings; man terrified of flute music
-until 1980, anxiety disorders classified together w somatoform / dissociative disorders under neurosis
-this term implied that the cause was presumed to be due to disturbance in CNS
-Freud said there was difference b/w objective fear and neurotic anxiety, which is signal to ego that an
unacceptable drive is pressing for conscious representation
Etiology:
Barlow (2002) triple vulnerability etiological model of anxiety:
(1) generalized biological vulnerability (ex genetic disposition to being high-strung, nervous)
(2) nonspecific psychological vulnerability (ex low self-esteem)
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