Psychological Perspectives

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Using two different psychological perspectives explain how a worker could apply psychological thinking to one of the following situations. - A teenager who has been diagnosed as having an eating disorder

People who work in the industry of Psychology explore the scientific study of behaviour and see many questions arise about human beings and how certain psychological thinking can explain irregular behaviourisms. There are many different perspectives when it comes to Psychology but some of the main ones are that of Psychodynamic Theory and Behaviourist Theory. Looking at a teenager who has been diagnosed with an eating disorder with these perspectives in mind, may shed a different light on why the disorder has been acquired.

The psychodynamic perspective shows an insight to a behaviour suggesting that it is an unconscious force that determines certain characteristics. This analysis has been known to have developed from the theories of Sigmund Freud who ‘became convinced that many of the nervous systems displayed by patients could not be explained purely from a physiological point of view’ (Malim, T, 1992, p14) Behaviours such as phobias fears and irrational self defeating behaviours were therefore suggested to be related to instinctual drives, experiences from childhood and pre-conscious thoughts. The drives that a human being has, conscious on not, regulates their behaviourisms which is therefore seen to have an effect on their emotional and personality development. As well as this, these behaviours are affected by innate emotional forces or the body’s processes. ’the constraints played on the expression of these basic desires by conscious effort on the part of the individuals or as a result of social pressures, parental influences, lead to repression of the desires’ (Burns, R,B 1988) Consequently, the desires someone has needs to be fulfilled so that they are not repressed and accommodated for in another form. Eating disorders can be understood in this way as how someone has been brought up around food, will influence how they behave in the future. For example, if they were not allowed sweet things, then their conscious desires for sweet things will be much higher when older and there will still be motivation to accomplish fulfilment. It was suggested that the personality of humans are consisted of three major structures being the ID, EGO, and SUPEREGO. Every human has urges and wants that need to be satisfied, some in order to survive. This is defined as a persons ID which is in a constant battle with the Super ego, which uses feelings such as anxiety and guilt from preventing us from always doing what the ID wants, otherwise can be know as our conscience. However a balance between the two is created by the EGO. ‘it is because of the reflective character of the mind that we must act under the idea of freedom. For if we are , as it were, bidden from the outside of our own judgement – by a desire- then the reflective mind must endorse the desire before it can act on it.’ (Lear, J, 2005) In particular this case of the person with the eating disorder, they could have experienced an event, traumatic or conflicting during their childhood stages of growing up that have interfered with the way the EGO has to balance these two. This would mean that the person’s way of dealing with particular circumstances, if the ID was left to drive the persons thinking, would not be in conjunction with what is socially acceptable in society as the ID functions on the pleasure principle and would not take anything else into consideration. As we develop our libidos a problem at an important stage could lead to an unhealthy fixation that is not necessarily noticed by the person diagnosed – such as an obsession with the way people could manage their food. The childhood stages of growing up are very important in this theory as it has been suggested by Freud that behaviours and feelings, including any underlying problems when we...
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