Section 1 Class Notes

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Symptoms: thoughts, feelings, and behaviors that indicate a mental disorder Syndrome: a group of symptoms that appear together and are assumed to represent a specific type of disorder Additional considerations:

• Duration
• Impairment
Defining abnormal behavior
• Personal distress
o Subjective discomfort
o May/may not be abnormal
▪ Nerves for test is normal distress
o May/may not feel distress
▪ Person in mania may not feel distress in the moment • Relative frequency—how rare is it?
o May/may not be abnormal if rare
▪ How rare should it be? How extreme should it be? ▪ Rare and desirable—talents
• Social norm violations
o Just because something isn’t mainstream doesn’t mean it’s bad ▪ Protests, parking illegally
• Predictable responses to stressors are normal
o Death of a loved one
• Harmful Dysfunction—Wakefield
o Results from the failure of some internal mechanism to perform its natural function o Causes harm to the person as judged by the standards of that person’s culture • DSM-IV-TR Classification of Disorders

o Disorders are identified by their symptoms
o Causes (etiology) often unknown
• Mental disorder vs. abnormal behavior
o May have one, the other, both, or neither
▪ Schizophrenia—both
▪ Anxiety disorder—both or only mental • Why classify?
o Provides common nomenclature
o Socially and politically defines the field
o Can be negative
▪ Stigma
▪ Stereotypes
• Role of culture
o Etic Perspective—overall perspective (outsider) ▪ Assumes universal principles cal be applied to all cultures ▪ Culture-general or universal orientation o Emic perspective—culture specific (insider)

▪ Involves understanding the culture from perspectives of those in the culture ▪ Uses culture-specific criteria
o Zeitgeist
▪ Spirit of the times
← Drapetomia (slaves wanting to run away) (no longer a disorder) ← Homosexuality (no longer a disorder) ← Pathological gambling (now disorder) o Problem Suppression-Facilitation Model

▪ Culture suppresses (via punishment) some behaviors ← Jamaican boys internalize, American boys externalize (1999) ▪ Culture facilitates (via modeling and reinforcement) other behaviors o Adult-Distress-Threshold Model

▪ Culture determines adult thresholds for different type of child problems • Epidemiology—study of the frequency and distribution of disorders within a population o Comorbidity

▪ Manifestation of more than one disorder o Incidence
▪ How many new cases of a disorder that occur in a population within a specific time period ← How many people were diagnosed with depression this year? o Prevalence

▪ The total number of active cases (old and new) present in the population at a given time o Lifetime Prevalence
▪ Total proportion of people in a given population who ever had the disorder o 32-46% lifetime prevalence for at least one disorder ▪ Abnormal?
o 1 year prevalence of any psychological diagnosis=20% o 1 year prevalence rate of any addictive diagnosis=6% o most sever disorders are in people with 3+ lifetime disorders=17% o Race and ethnic groups

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