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Chapter 12

Chapter 12. Emotions and Mental Health in Childhood

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University of Toronto Scarborough
Gerald Cupchik

Chapter 12. Emotions and Mental Health in Childhood Monday, April 18, 2011 3:51 PM Disorders of emotional life in childhood and adolescence are states in which young people are no longer able to successfully cope, or in which they are getting into serious trouble. { Concerned with extremes of emotions: intense and long-lasting states of anxiety, of depression, or of anger. { Disorders does not equal extremes of emotions - diff between sadness and depression. Conduct disorder: externalizing disorder of childhood and adolescence in which others rights, or social norms, are often violated. It usually includes aggression that causes harm to others, damage to property, deceitfulness, and theft. { The case of Peter, who is very angry but also describes feelings of sadness and loneliness. { The main system is that of psychiatric diagnosis, usually by means of an interview. Diagnoses are descriptions of patterns of behaviour. Someone who fulfills defined criteria for a defined period is usually, though not always, impaired in their functioning. Psychopathology is the study of abnormal functioning. { The main scheme for diagnosis of psychiatric problems in adults and children is the DSM-IV-TR; another is the ICD-10-CM. They are based on a medical model and focus on individuals rather than their contexts. There is often a continuum of disorders. The method of assessment typically involves checklists of symptoms or behaviour patterns; questionnaires. Then clusters of behaviours are identified. { In middle childhood two types of emotional disorders: externalizing (anger) and internalizing (depression). { In adolescence, other types occur such as drug abuse and eating disorders on top of what was before. Two principle emotion-based externalizing disorders of childhood are: { Oppositional defiant disorder and conduct disorder. { The symptoms for these disorders are similar, they are based around a frequent presence of anger and contempt. Conduct disorder include antisocial behaviour on top of the symptoms described for oppositional defiant disorder. Several hypotheses about the relationship between emotion and disorder. These do not necessarily exclude each other. Predominance of one emotion system. { Most common view of disorders of emotion in childhood that one emotion becomes prominent. Depressed people experience more sadness than other emotions, or experience sadness more often than others. { A disorder would be a balance among emotions which, instead of being responsive to what happened in the world, is biased towards pre-established patterns of certain kinds. { Angry children and sad children have different kinds of appraisal styles. Deppresogenic attribution style is when depressed children are more likely to make attributions for negative events that are stable (it will always be this way), internal (it is my fault), and global (all situations will be like this). { In terms of temperament, goys are more likely than girls to think that aggression enhances self-esteem. In externalizing disorders, this predominance of goals seem to be exaggerated. Inappropriate emotional responses. { Children with disorder react to events with deviant emotional responses: laughing when someone is distressed. The elicitation of certain emotions seem unusual. Dysregulation. { Emotions are not properly regulated; they are inappropriate to social context. Both inexpressive and highly expressive children had more externalizing problems. Emotion dysregulation underlies both bullying and being victimized by bullies among children who have been physically or sexually abused. { Associated to the lack of effortful control. Children with externalizing disorders, but not internalizing disorders, are impulsive, and low in effortful regulation. www.notesolution.com
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