PSYC 100 Chapter Notes - Chapter 18: Franz Mesmer, Aversion Therapy, Dorothea Dix

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17 Nov 2012
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Chapter 18: The Treatment of Psychological Disorders
p. 588-625
Psychological Disorders and Psychotherapy
Early Treatment of Psychological Disorders
- odd behaviour was viewed as the presence of the devil/evil spirits
- trephining: earliest attempts of treatment by drilling into skull to allow evil spirits to
leave the head
- exorcisms, beating, starving, drowning, etc. were rituals to rid of evil
- Johann Weir argued against the idea of evil spirits; said odd behaviour indicated
suffering mental illness
- mental illnesses were later accepted, but people suffering were shunned from society,
usually in asylums
- most asylums were extremely inhumane, patients kept in chains
- Philippe Pinel said most mental patients would respond better to positivity
- Dorothea Dix, based on Pinel‟s success, led the campaign for humane treatment of
mental patients
The Development of Psychotherapy
- modenrn approach traced to Franz Anton Mesmer practiced mesmerism (hypnosis) to
treat patients; Jean Charcot studied hysteria and used hypnosis in his treatment; Freud
later worked with Charcot leading to his approach of psychoanalysis
- most therapists adopt eclectic approach, using method(s) best suited for the particular
patient, often combining aspects of several approaches
Insight Therapies
- believe people are essentially normal but learn maladaptive thought patterns/emotions
expressed in maladaptive behaviour
- behaviour viewed as a symptom of deeper underlying psyc. problems
- variety of treatments; emphasizes talking between client and patient
Psychoanalysis and Modern Psychodynamic Approaches
- Freud created psychoanalysis, aiming to provide patient with insight into their
unconscious motivations/impulses
- Freud said personality reflected unconscious conflicts b/w id, ego, superego
conflicts often traced to inadequately maintained sexual/aggressive urges or
incomplete progression through psychosexual stages
- therapist tries to find/interpret clues about origins of intrapsychic conflicts, revealed
through dreams, physical problems, memory (or lack thereof), manner of speech, and
cognitive-emotional reactions to therapy
Psychoanalytic Techniques
- free association: client encouraged to speak freely without sensoring any
thoughts/ideas; therapist limits eye contact to minimize authoritative influence over
patient‟s disclosures
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- dream interpretation : evaluation of underlying dream content, removing possible bias
by distinguishing b/w manifest content and latent content
manifest content- actual images/events occuring in dream
latent content- hidden meaning/significance of dream (masked by manifest
- resistance: defensive maneuvers that hinder the process of therapy
- transference: client relives aspects of childhood in therapy and may project powerful
emotions/attitudes onto therapist (love/hate therapist)
- countertransference- phenomenon where therapist projects own emotions onto client
- Freud said therapy lasts between months and years, several times a week
Modern Psychodynamic Therapy
- less emphasis on psychosexual development, more emphasis on interpersonal
- ego is viewed as larger role in influencing thoughts/behaviour; people seen as less
constrained by unconscious forces than Freud believed
- intermittent psychodynamic therapy clients take breaks from therapist, only seeing them
when necessary so client isn‟t dependent on therapy
- brief psychodynamic therapy: completed in 10-25 sessions
goal of therapist to understand/improve client‟s interpersonal skills through
interpretation of transference processes
focuses on client‟s vies on interpersonal relationships, attempting to modify
one preveting development of fulfilling relationships
Humanistic Therapy
- focus on client‟s unique potential for growth and self-realization
- assumes people are inherently good and have innate worth
- psychological problems seen as preventing growth, therapy aims to overcome this
obstruction to restore potential
Client-Centred Therapy
- developed by Carl Rogers
- client decides what to talk about w/o direction/judgment from therapist
- believed cause of many disorders can be traced to incongruence, people‟s self-
perceptions differing from their ideal self
- goal is to reduce incongruece by encouraging experiences that wil make the ideal self
more attainable
- therapist aims to make client more aware of their thoughts, feelings, perceptions
through reflection (re-phrasing/mirroring client‟s statements)
- unconditional positive regard: therapist shows client personal worth is not dependent on
anything they say, feel, think, act
Gestalt Therapy
- developed by ex-students of Freud, moving away from psychoanalysis
- emphasis on present experience, therapist is often confrontational and challenges client
to deal honestly with emotions
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