Abnormal Psychology: Abnormality

Topics: Abnormal psychology, Mental disorder, Schizophrenia Pages: 3 (795 words) Published: June 1, 2011
Abnormal Psychology

1) Abnormality is defined from an average where common behaviour is defined as “normal” and rare behaviour is defined as abnormal. These characteristics can be shown and placed on a scale “graph” that would reveal how common their score is in comparison to everyone else. There are problems deciding how rare behaviour has to be to be considered abnormal, phobias could be defined as normal as they affect a lot of the population. Different cultures have different definitions of being abnormal. Something that is rare to use might be defined as normal to a different culture. Statistical infrequency is a way to define events that are more or less common, this frequency is represented with a curve the most common events are the high part of this curve and the less common are the lowest part of the curve. The most infrequent occurrences are considered abnormal and statistically infrequent; these are events that occur rarely. In some situations statistical infrequency is used to define mental retardation, but statistical infrequency doesn’t focus on the bad points only, abnormal behaviour isn’t always undesirable e.g. being better at sports, genius’s. Using statistical infrequency means we are unable to distinguish the good and bad abnormalities.

2) The diagnostic term for the patient is schizophrenia the doctor will evaluate the patient and ask about symptoms, medical history, and see if theres anything physically wrong with the patient. There are no tests to identify mental illnesses, the doctor would send the patient for tests to rule out any other illnesses first. If theres nothing physically wrong and the symptoms persist the doctor may refer the patient to a psychiatrist these people are trained for treating mental illnesses. These trained people use a specially designed interview to evaluate the person, they also see how the person is within themselves and socially, and watch the persons attitude and behaviour, the doctor would ask if...
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