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Chapter 9

Chapter 9 Key Terms & Notes

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Chapter 9 – Mood Disorders
Bipolar disorder: disorder marked by cycles between manic episodes and depressive
episodes; also called manic depression
Mania: state of persistently elevated mood, feelings of grandiosity, over enthusiasm,
racing thoughts, rapid speech, and impulsive actions
Depression: state marked by either a sad mood or a loss of interest in ones usual
activities, as well as feelings of hopelessness, suicidal ideation, psychomotor agitation or
retardation, and trouble concentrating.
Unipolar depression: second type of mood disorder; people with unipolar depression
experience only depression no mania.
Sometimes people with depression lose sight of reality and begin to experience delusions
and hallucinations.
Delusions: are beliefs with no basis in reality
Hallucinations: involve seeing, hearing, or feeling things that are not real
Two categories of unipolar depression:
Major depression: requires that person experience either depressed mood or loss of
interest in usual activities, plus at least four other symptoms of depression chronically for
at least two weeks, symptoms have to be severe enough to interfere with functioning in
daily life.
Dysthymic disorder: a less severe form of depressive disorder than is major depression,
but it is more chronic. To be diagnosed a person must be experiencing depressed mood
plus two other symptoms of depression for at least two weeks.
Double depression: People who experience both major depression and dysthymic
disorder. People with double depression are chronically dysthymic and occasionally sink
into episodes of major depression.
Seasonal affective disorder (SAD): subtype of major depressive disorder, people with
SAD have history of at least two years of experiencing major depressive episodes and
fully recovering from them. Symptoms seem to be tied to number of daylight hours in a
Bipolar I disorder: people who experience manic episodes, most of these people
eventually fall into a depressive episode. For some, the depressions are as severe as major
depressive episodes, whereas others have episodes of depression that are relatively mild
and infrequent
Episodes meeting full criteria for mania are necessary for diagnosis
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Bipolar II disorder: experience severe episodes of depression that meet the criteria for
major depression, but their episodes of mania are milder and are known as
Hypomania: similar symptoms to mania but the difference is that, these symptoms are
not severe enough to interfere with daily functioning and do not involve hallucinations or
- Major depressive episodes are necessary for diagnosis, as well as hypomanic episodes
Cyclothymic disorder: a less severe but more chronic form of bipolar disorder. Person
with this disorder alternates between episodes of hypomania and moderate depression
chronically over at least a two-year period.
Rapid cycling bipolar disorder: if a person has four or more cycles of mania and
depression within a year
Monoamines: neurotransmitters that have been implicated most often in mood disorders,
the specific monoamines that have been implicated include:
Norepinephrine: neurotransmitter involved in the regulation of mood
Serotonin: neurotransmitter that is involved in the regulation of mood and impulsive
Dopamine: neurotransmitter in the brain, excess amounts of which have been thought to
cause schizophrenia
Monoamine theories: theories that low levels of monoamines, particularly
Norepinephrine and serotonin, cause depression, whereas excessive or imbalanced levels
of monoamines, particularly dopamine, cause mania.
Hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA axis): involved in the fight or flight
response – three key components of the neuroendocrine system that work together in a
feedback system interconnected with the limbic system and the cerebral cortex
Cortisol: normally when confronted with a stressor HPA axis becomes more active. It
increases the body’s levels of major stress hormones, such as cortisol – which help the
body, respond to the stressor by making it possible to fight the stressor or flee from it.
Once stressor is gone HPA axis actively returns to its baseline levels.
Premenstrual dysphoric disorder: syndrome in which a woman experiences an increase
in depressive symptoms during the premenstrual period and relief from these symptoms
with the onset of menstruation
Behavioural theory of depression: suggests that life stress leads to depression because it
reduces the positive reinforcers in a persons life.
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