Textbook Notes (378,719)
CA (167,252)
UTSC (19,212)
Psychology (9,983)
PSYA02H3 (979)
John Bassili (149)
Chapter 17

chapter 17 text book notes

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Department
Psychology
Course Code
PSYA02H3
Professor
John Bassili

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Chapter 17: The nature and causes of mental disorders
-Some less severe mental disorders seems to caused by environ factors or by persons
perception of these factors. More severe ones = caused by hereditary and bio factors.
Classification and diagnosis of mental disorders
-Emil Kraepelin: 1st to recognize need of classification sys of mental disorders.
What is abnormal?
-Mental disorders are characterized by abonormal behavior, thoughts, feelings.
Abnormal = departure from norm. The distinction between n and abn can be
subjective. Stress that the important feature of mental disorder is not abnormal, but
maladaptive (cause distress or discomfort and interfere w/ ppls ability to lead
satisfying, productive lives). Disorders often makes it impossible to have job,
marriage etc.
*Diagnosis may never be completely free from social and political judgments.
Understanding the cultural diff in beliefs is important.
Perspectives on the Causes of Mental Disorders.
-No single cause of mental disorder. Caused by interaction of: hereditary, cognitive,
environ.
Genetic: physiological effect of relevant genes.
Cognitive: identify of origins of distorted perceptions and maladaptive thought
patterns.
Environ: wide range: family history, social interactions, diet, drugs, childhood
disease.
*The perspectives differ in exp of the etiology(origin) of mental disorders.
1.Psychodynamic Perspective
-Based on Freuds work: Mental disorder from intrapsychic conflict produced by 3
components of mind (id, ego, superego). Conflicts may centre on attempts to control
potentially harmful expressions of sexual or aggressive impulses, or from attempts to
cope w/ external dangers and traumatic experiences. Result if too strong: defence
mechanism distort reality or the ind begins to unc in some areas of life in manner of
earlier deve stage. Conc may involve, anxiety, obsessive thoughts and compulsive
behavior, depression, distorted perceptions, paralysis, blindness for which theres no
phy cause.
2.Medical Perspective
-Based on Greek physician Hippocrates= excesses of the 4 humours (black, yellow bile
and blood, phlegm) lead to emotional problems. Mental illness=illnesses of the mind.
At first, condition of asylums( mental hospitals) were very ill, it further the disorder
of patients. Now, most patients are treated on outpatient basis w/ drugs, only severe
ones are institutionalized. Mental disorders are caused by specific abnormalities of
brain and nervous system, shud be approached in same way as physical illnesses. Bio
factors known at least to contribute to deve of some mental disorders including
schizophrenia and bipolar disorder and drugs are usually used, also genetics play a
role.
3.The Cognitive-behavioural perspective
-Disorders are learned maladaptive behaviors best understood by focus on environ
factors and persons perception of them. Caused by persons interaction w/ environ.
www.notesolution.com
Behaviour-analytic and cognitive approaches. `Not only environ, also persons
subjective interpretation of those event. Therapists encourage patients to replace or
sub maladaptive thoughts and behaviours w/ more adaptive ones.
4.Humanistic Perspective.
-Mental disorders arise when ppl perceive that they must earn the + regard of others.
Thus, they become overly sensitive to the demands and criticisms of others and come
to define their personal value primarily in terms of others rxns to them. Lack
confidence in own abilities. May feel have no control over the outcomes of the impt or
not impt events in lives—depression.
5.Sociocultural Perspective.
-Culture plays a sig role in deve of mental disorder. Proper treatment requires an
understanding of cultural issues. Cultural variables influence the nature and extent
to which ppl interpret thei own behaviours as normal or abnormal. Wats normal in 1
may not be in another culture.
*Mental disorders exist that appear to occur only in certain cultures—Culture-
bound syndromes.
The Diathesis-stress model of mental disorders (comb of diff elements from
above)
-this model says that the comb of a persons genetics and early learning experiences
yields a predisposition (a diathesis) for a particular mental disorder. HWV, the
disorder will develop only if that person is confronted w/ stressors that exceed own
coping abilities.
The DSM-IV Classification Scheme -Diagnostic and Statistical Manual IV
-Universal set of diagnostic categories having criteria specified as explicitly as
possible. Describe an inds psyc condition using 5 diff criteria called axes.
-> Axe 1: info on major psyc disorders required clinical attention (Ex:alcohol
dependence, major depressive disorder)
->Axe 2: personality disorders. (ex: antisocial personality disorder)
*Diagnosis made using 1 and/or 2. *Axes 3-5 give info about the life of ind.
->Axe 3: physical disorders accompanying the psyc disorder. (alcoholic cirrhosis)
->Axe 4: specifies the severity of stress that the person has experienced. Source of
stress and indicates its severity and approx. duration. (severe-divorce, loss job)
->Axe 5: overall levl of psyc, social, occupational functioning. Use this to estimate the
extent to which a persons quality of life has been diminished by the disorder. (ex: 30=
serious impairment)
*Rating made based on 100 Global Assessment of Functioning scale. 100 is good, 10
may cause injury to self/other. 50 is serious problem in functioning!
Problems w/ DSM-IV:
-More consistent w/ the medical perspective on mental disorders than w/ other
perspectives. Emphasizes bio factors, overlooked potential cognitive and
environmental determiinants. Not 100% reliable (users would be able to diagnose
each case in same way). Mental disorders dont have distinct borders. Ex: Post-
traumatic stress disorder requires persistence of symptoms for 30+ days, less is acute
stress disorder! 2 dff disorders for same symptoms!
www.notesolution.com
*Danger of labeling some1. Note, diagnoses only describes the symptoms of the
disorder, doesnt explain the underlying causes and psychological processes.
The need for classification
-Thomas Szasz: shud just quit classify and diagnose mental disorders.
-HWV, proper classification has advantage. W/ few exceptions, recognition of a spec.
diagnostic category precedes the development of successful treatment for that
disorder.
Prevalence(  ) of Mental Disorders
-Substance use disorder, mood disorder, anxiety disorders = most common types of
disorders.
*Mental disorders occur at a fairly high frequency.
->8% of ON seek some kind of mental health assistance in past 12 months.
Evaluating scientific issues Clinical vs. Actuarial Diagnosis.
->Predictions of ppls future behaviour, diagnoses and predictions are important.
->Diagnosis and prediction based one 2 things: collection of data + interpretation of
data.
*Both important.
once data collected, 2 ways to interpret it: Clinical (by experience) or Actuarial
(stat).
*shown that Actuarial is superior, 70-80% accuracy, clinical = 58%.
Clinical Judgments: based on experts memories of similar cases, and knowledge
of the symptoms that predict particular types of outcomes.
Actuarial judgments: by applying empirically derived rules that relate
particular indications (symptoms, test scores, or personal characteristics such as age,
sex, medical history)w/ particular outcomes. Ex: insurance rate. Can predict when u
die. w/ accuracy.
Why Actuarial more accurate?
->Greater reliability. Decision based on precise formula, always produces same
judgment for a particular set of data.
->Clinical judgment is inaccurate cuz: human brain has difficulty sifting thru mass
of data and retaining useful info while discarding useless or unreliable info. May
focus on the striking ones, ignore others.
Why practitioners prefer the clinical method still?
-unaware of the research showing the inferiority.
-say the actuarial method dehumanizing, it ignores the fact that each person is
unique.
-denial: diagnostic skills developed over a long period of time can be duplicated by a
formula.
Anxiety, Somatoform, Dissociative Mental Disorder
-Referred as Neuroses. These 3 are strategies of perception and behavior that have
gotten out of hand. Characterized by pathological increases in anxiety May result
from an inadequate number of defence mechanisms, from immature defences that
cant cope w/ anxiety, or defence mechanisms applied so rigidly that they have become
maladaptive. Dont suffer from delusion. Realize they have problem.
www.notesolution.com

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Description
Chapter 17: The nature and causes of mental disorders -Some less severe mental disorders seems to caused by environ factors or by persons perception of these factors. More severe ones = caused by hereditary and bio factors. Classification and diagnosis of mental disorders -Emil Kraepelin: 1 stto recognize need of classification sys of mental disorders. What is abnormal? -Mental disorders are characterized by abonormal behavior, thoughts, feelings. Abnormal = departure from norm. The distinction between n and abn can be subjective. Stress that the important feature of mental disorder is not abnormal, but maladaptive (cause distress or discomfort and interfere w ppls ability to lead satisfying, productive lives). Disorders often makes it impossible to have job, marriage etc. *Diagnosis may never be completely free from social and political judgments. Understanding the cultural diff in beliefs is important. Perspectives on the Causes of Mental Disorders. -No single cause of mental disorder. Caused by interaction of: hereditary, cognitive, environ. Genetic: physiological effect of relevant genes. Cognitive: identify of origins of distorted perceptions and maladaptive thought patterns. Environ: wide range: family history, social interactions, diet, drugs, childhood disease. *The perspectives differ in exp of the etiology(origin) of mental disorders. 1. Psychodynamic Perspective -Based on Freuds work: Mental disorder from intrapsychic conflict produced by 3 components of mind (id, ego, superego). Conflicts may centre on attempts to control potentially harmful expressions of sexual or aggressive impulses, or from attempts to cope w external dangers and traumatic experiences. Result if too strong: defence mechanism distort reality or the ind begins to unc in some areas of life in manner of earlier deve stage. Conc may involve, anxiety, obsessive thoughts and compulsive behavior, depression, distorted perceptions, paralysis, blindness for which theres no phy cause. 2. Medical Perspective -Based on Greek physician Hippocrates= excesses of the 4 humours (black, yellow bile and blood, phlegm) lead to emotional problems. Mental illness=illnesses of the mind. At first, condition of asylums( mental hospitals) were very ill, it further the disorder of patients. Now, most patients are treated on outpatient basis w drugs, only severe ones are institutionalized. Mental disorders are caused by specific abnormalities of brain and nervous system, shud be approached in same way as physical illnesses. Bio factors known at least to contribute to deve of some mental disorders including schizophrenia and bipolar disorder and drugs are usually used, also genetics play a role. 3. The Cognitive-behavioural perspective -Disorders are learned maladaptive behaviors best understood by focus on environ factors and persons perception of them. Caused by persons interaction w environ. www.notesolution.comBehaviour-analytic and cognitive approaches. Not only environ, also persons subjective interpretation of those event. Therapists encourage patients to replace or sub maladaptive thoughts and behaviours w more adaptive ones. 4. Humanistic Perspective. -Mental disorders arise when ppl perceive that they must earn the + regard of others. Thus, they become overly sensitive to the demands and criticisms of others and come to define their personal value primarily in terms of others rxns to them. Lack confidence in own abilities. May feel have no control over the outcomes of the impt or not impt events in livesdepression. 5. Sociocultural Perspective. -Culture plays a sig role in deve of mental disorder. Proper treatment requires an understanding of cultural issues. Cultural variables influence the nature and extent to which ppl interpret thei own behaviours as normal or abnormal. Wats normal in 1 may not be in another culture. *Mental disorders exist that appear to occur only in certain culturesCulture- bound syndromes. The Diathesis-stress model of mental disorders (comb of diff elements from above) -this model says that the comb of a persons genetics and early learning experiences yields a predisposition (a diathesis) for a particular mental disorder. HWV, the disorder will develop only if that person is confronted w stressors that exceed own coping abilities. The DSM-IV Classification Scheme -Diagnostic and Statistical Manual IV -Universal set of diagnostic categories having criteria specified as explicitly as possible. Describe an inds psyc condition using 5 diff criteria called axes. -> Axe 1: info on major psyc disorders required clinical attention (Ex:alcohol dependence, major depressive disorder) ->Axe 2: personality disorders. (ex: antisocial personality disorder) *Diagnosis made using 1 andor 2. *Axes 3-5 give info about the life of ind. ->Axe 3: physical disorders accompanying the psyc disorder. (alcoholic cirrhosis) ->Axe 4: specifies the severity of stress that the person has experienced. Source of stress and indicates its severity and approx. duration. (severe-divorce, loss job) ->Axe 5: overall levl of psyc, social, occupational functioning. Use this to estimate the extent to which a persons quality of life has been diminished by the disorder. (ex: 30= serious impairment) *Rating made based on 100 Global Assessment of Functioning scale. 100 is good, 10 may cause injury to selfother. 50 is serious problem in functioning! Problems w DSM-IV: -More consistent w the medical perspective on mental disorders than w other perspectives. Emphasizes bio factors, overlooked potential cognitive and environmental determiinants. Not 100% reliable (users would be able to diagnose each case in same way). Mental disorders dont have distinct borders. Ex: Post- traumatic stress disorder requires persistence of symptoms for 30+ days, less is acute stress disorder! 2 dff disorders for same symptoms! www.notesolution.com
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