Psy/270 Dsmiv

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Axia College Material
Appendix G


The DSM-IV is an important tool for clinicians. It provides a standard for diagnoses to be standardized across psychology; however, the DSM-IV is not as precise for diagnosing personality disorders as some psychologists would like.

Give an example of each of the following problems identified in your readings and explain how these problems could negatively affect a diagnosis.

1. Some criteria used for reaching a diagnosis cannot be observed directly. Some symptoms may not necessarily be observable in a clinical setting. For instance, a child with what is presumed to be ADHD may not show any signs when seated in an unfamiliar place, the psychiatrist may have to come observe them in a classroom setting to watch him or her in their own element. The DSM-IV cannot interpret how an individual may respond in a different environment. 2.

3. Personality disorders can be similar to each other. If the information is gathered in a solely clinical setting a mis-diagnosis can be made. For instance, Bipolar Disorder and Depression have a thin line of shared symptoms and some patients are often diagnosed with depression immediately because of the similarities. Unfortunately this mis-diagnosis based only on clinical visits may very well prove detrimental when the patient continues to face issues regardless of being medicated, because they are not on the appropriate prescriptions. 4.

5. People with different personalities can be given the same diagnosis The DSM principles may be misconstrued as personality disorders opposed to personality styles. For example, a patient who is meticulous and super diligent may seem to be obsessive compulsive, when in reality their upbringing alone could very well have made them this way, and they may not suffer from an OCD at all. 6. Do you think that personality disorders are true mental illnesses? Why or why not? I think that they can be, and should not be ignored. It’s better to be...
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