PSYC 1010 Chapter Notes - Chapter 15: Dissociative Identity Disorder, Fugue State, Panic Disorder
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Chapter 15 // Psychological Disorders
Criteria of Abnormal Behaviour
-people are often said to have a disorder because their behaviour deviates from what their
society considers acceptable.
-Ex… transvestic fetishism is a sexual disorder in which a man achieves sexual arousal by
dressing in women’s clothing. This behaviour is regarded as disorders because it is
deviating from our culture’s norms.
2. Maladaptive behaviour
-people are judged to have a psychological disorder because their everyday adaptive
behaviour is impaired.
3. Personal Distress
-the diagnosis of a psychological disorder is based on an individuals report of great
Stereotypes of Psychological Disorders
1. Psychological Disorders are Incurable
2. People with Psychological Disorders are often Violent and Dangerous
3. People with Psychological Disorders Behave in Bizarre Ways and Are Very Different From
The Prevalence of Psychological Disorders
Epidemiology - the study of the distribution of mental/physical disorders in a population.
Prevalence - refers to the percentage of a population that exhibits a disorder during a specified
-The most common types of psychological disorders are…
-substance/drug use disorders
Anxiety Disorders - are a class of disorders marked by feelings of excessive apprehension and
Generalized Anxiety Disorder - is marked by a chronic, high level of anxiety that is not tied to
any specific threat.
-this anxiety is sometimes called free-floating anxiety because it is nonspecific.
-people with this disorder worry constantly about yesterdays mistakes and tomorrows
-their anxiety is commonly accompanied by physical symptoms such as, trembling,
muscle tension, diarrhea, dizziness, faintness, sweating, and heart palpitations.
Specific Phobias - marked by a persistent and irrational fear of an object or situation that presents
no realistic danger.
-phobic reactions tend to be accompanied by physical symptoms of anxiety, such as
trembling, and palpitations.
-Particularly common are…
-acrophobia (fear of heights)
-claustrophobia (fear of small, enclosed spaces)
-brontophobia (fear of storms)
-hydrophobia (fear of water)
-agrophobia (fear of going out to public places)
-people troubled by phobias typically realize that their fears are irrational, but they are still
unable to calm themselves when confronted by a phobic object.
Panic Disorder - characterized by recurrent attacks of overwhelming anxiety that usually occur
suddenly and unexpectedly.
-these paralyzing panic attacks are accompanied by physical symptoms of anxiety.
-after a number panic attacks, victims often become apprehensive, wondering when their
next panic attack will occur.
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder - marked by persistent, uncontrollable intrusions of unwanted
thoughts (obsessions) and urges to engage in senseless rituals (compulsions).
-Obsessions; are thoughts that repeatedly intrude on one’s consciousness in a distressing way.
-Compulsions; are actions that one feels forced to carry out.
-usually involve stereotyped rituals that temporarily relieve anxiety.
-Specific types of obsessions tend to be associated with specific types of compulsions.
-EX…obsessions about contamination tend to be paired with cleaning compulsions.
Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD)
-PTSD is often elicited by any of a variety of traumatic events, including rape, assault, a severe
automobile accident, a natural disaster, or the witnessing of someones death.
-PTSD does not surface until many months or years after a persons exposure to severe stress
and is tied to memory for the events.
-Common symptoms include…
-re-experiencing the traumatic event in the form of nightmares and flashbacks
-problems in social relationships
-an increased sense of vulnerability
-elevated levels of arousal
-anxiety, anger, guilt
-Increased vulnerability is associated with greater personal injuries and losses, greater intensity
of exposure to the traumatic event, and more exposure to the grotesque aftermath of the event.
-The Intensity of One’s Reaction At The Time Of The Traumatic Event; individuals who have
especially intense emotional reactions during or immediately after the traumatic event go on to
show elevated vulnerability to PTSD.