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Chapter 14

PSYA02 - Chapter 14.docx

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Steve Joordens

Chapter 14Psychological Disordersto qualify as a mental disorder thoughts feelings and emotions must be persistent harmful to the person experiencing them and uncontrollable the complicated human mind can produce behaviors thoughts and emotions that change radically from moment to momentIdentifying Psychological Disorders What is Abnormalin ancient times people who acted strangely or reported bizarre thoughts or emotions were often understood in the context of religions or the supernatural in some cultures and religious traditions madness is still interpreted as possession by animal spirits or demons or as Gods punishmentthese ways of looking at psychological abnormalities have been replaced in industrialized areas of the world by a MEDICAL MODELthe conceptualization of psychological disorders as diseases that like physical diseases have biological causes defined symptoms and possible curestreating abnormal behavior in the way we treat illness suggests that the first step is to determine the nature of the problem through diagnosisin diagnosis clinicians seek to determine the nature of the patients mental disease by assessing symptomsbehaviors thoughts and emotions suggestive of an underlying abnormal syndrome a coherent cluster of symptoms due to a single causeevery action or thought suggestive of abnormality cannot be traced to an underlying diseaseClassification of Disorderspsychologists have adopted an approach developed by psychiatrists who use a system for classifying mental disordersthat is why a consensual diagnostic system was publishedthe current version of this manual is the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders Fourth Edition Text Revision or DSMIVTRDSMIVTRa classification system that describes the features used to diagnose each recognized mental disorder and indicates how the disorder can be distinguished from other similar problems each disorder is named as classified as though it were a distinct illnessmajor misconceptionthat a mental disorder can be defined entirely in terms of deviation from the average the typical or healthypeople who have mental disorders may behave think or experience emotions in unusual ways but simple departure from the norm is not the whole picture
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