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Mental Disorders

Psychological disorder
 Defined as atypical, disturbing, maladaptive,
and unjustifiable behavior of a person.
Neuroses and Psychoses
 Neuroses- are mild form of mental disorders
characterized mainly by anxiety which is
manifested directly or altered through defense
mechanisms that lower efficiency.
 Psychoses- severe form of mental disorders
involving loss contact with reality with which
psychotic person must have to be
 Characteristics of psychological Illness

1.People are unproductive

2.People don’t get along well w/ others
3. People have poor understanding of themselves and
how others view them.
4. People have poor understanding of the physical
5. People have poor intellectual functioning
6. People have trouble focusing on their attention.
7. People Have generally poor judgment
8. People have difficulty experiencing pleasure.
9.People can feel strongly about things, some cannot.
10.People have trouble giving and receiving love and
11. People are unique individuals.
Mental disorder classification
o Anxiety disorder- condition in which
intense feelings of fear and dread are long
standing and disruptive.
1.Phobia- involves strong, irrational fear of an
object or situation that does not objectively
justify such a reaction.( e.g. acrophobia-fear
of heights)
2.General Anxiety disorder-involves relatively
mild but long- lasting anxiety that is not
focused on any particular object or situation.
3.Panic Disorder- anxiety in the form of severe panic
attacks that come without warning or obvious cause.
4.Obsessive Compulsive Disorder- anxiety disorder
with which a person becomes obsessed with certain
thoughts or feels a compulsion to do certain things.
o Somatoform disorder- a person displays the
symptoms of some physical (somatic) disorder for
which there is no physical cause.
1.Conversion Disorder- old term (hysteria). A person
appears to be, but actually is not blind, deaf,
paralyzed, or insensitive to pain in various parts of
the body.
2. Hypochondriasis - strong, justified fear of physical
illness. A person is worried about his health and
physical state.
3.Somatization Disorder – a person has numerous
physical complaints without verifiable physical illness.
4. Pain Disorder- marked by complaints of severe, often
constant pain with no physical cause.
5. Dissociative Disorder- involves a sudden and usually
temporary disruptions in a person’s memory,
consciousness, or identity.
o Fugue- sudden loss of memory that continues for a long
period of time.
o Amnesia-sudden loss of memory of one’s own name or
other information and forgets temporarily all the
experiences but retains much of his past experiences.
o Multiple personality- a person has more than one identity.
• Substance related Disorders- problems that involve use
of psychoactive drugs for months or years in ways that
harm the user or others.
o Addiction-development of a physical need for a
psychoactive drug.
o Alcoholism-pattern of continuous or intermittent drinking
that may lead to addiction.
 Schizophrenia-literally means “split or broken mind”.
Refers to madness, insanity or psychosis. A pattern of
severely disturbed thought, emotion, perception, and
behavior that constitutes one of the most serious and
disabling of all mental disorders.
o Paranoid Schizophrenia- delusions of grandeur or
persecution,anger,anxiety,argumentativeness and
extreme anxiety.
o Disorganized Schizophrenia-delusions,
hallucinations, incoherent speech, inappropriate
laughter and neglected personal hygiene.
o Catatonic Schizophrenia- disordered movement,
alternating between total immobility(stupor) and
wild excitement.
o Undifferentiated Schizophrenia-patterns of
disordered behavior, thought and emotion.
o Residual Schizophrenia-people who had prior
episodes of schizophrenia but not currently
displaying symptoms.
o Disorders of thought- disturbed content, delusions
and disorganization, loose associations,
neologism and word salad.
o Disorders of perception- hallucinations or false
perceptions; poorly focused attention.
o Disorders of emotion-flat affect, inappropriate tears,
laughter or anger.
Possible causes:
-Biological cause- genetics
-Psychological cause- learned maladaptive behavior,
disturbed patterns of family communication and
• Mood Disorders- also called affective disorders,
severe disturbances of mood, especially depression,
mania and bipolar disorder.
o Depression- extreme sadness
o Mania- elated, very active emotional state
o Bipolar disorder- alternating experiences of two
emotional extremes or poles.
• Sexual and gender disorders-these include disorders
that affect sexual desire, performance and behavior.
o Sexual dysfunction- a person’s desire for or ability to
have satisfying sexual experiences is inhibited.
o Paraphilias - a person’s sexual arousal is directed
toward stimuli that are defined as inappropriate.
• Personality disorders- have extreme and inflexible
personality traits that are distressing to the person
and/or cause problems in work, school or social
o Narcissistic personality disorder- exaggerated sense of
self importance accompanied by lack of empathy for
o Antisocial personality- marked by long term pattern of
irresponsible, impulsive behavior beginning in childhood
or early adolescence.
Eating disorders-involve extreme emotions, attitudes
and behaviors involving weight and food.
Sleep disorders-involving the sleep-wake cycle, inability
to sleep well at night or to stay awake during the day.
Factitious disorders-are conditions in which physical
and/or emotional symptoms are experienced in order to
place the individual in the role of a patient or a person
in need of help.
Adjustment disorders- failure to adjust to or deal well
with stressors.
Specific development disorders-mental retardation and
autistic disorder as well as other problems in development
of skills such as reading, speaking etc.
Organic mental disorders- caused by physical deterioration
of the brain due to aging, disease, drugs or other chemicals.
o Delirium- inability to think straight
o Dementia-loss of memory and other intellectual functions.
Delusional (paranoid) disorder – problems involving false
beliefs in real-life situations that could be true, such as being
followed, being conspired against or having a disease.
These delusions persist for at least one month.
 Psychological treatment
 Psychotherapy- treatment of psychological disorders
through psychological methods.
o Psychoanalysis- method of psychotherapy which seeks
to help clients gain insight into work through
unconscious thoughts and emotions presumed to cause
psychological problems.
o Phenomenological Psychotherapy- operates on the
following assumptions:
1.Treatment is a human encounter between equals, not a
cure given by an expert.
2.Clients will improve on their own, given the right
3.Ideal conditions through a therapeutic relationship.
4.Clients must remain responsible for choosing how
they will think and behave.
o Behavior Therapy- helps clients view psychological
problems as learned behaviors.
o Group Therapy- psychotherapy involving groups of
clients who interact with one another in sessions often
organized around specific problems.
o Family Therapy-method of treatment involving 2 or
more members in the same family system.
o Couples Therapy-form of therapy focusing on
improving communication between intimate partners.
 Biological Treatments
Psychoactive Drugs- affects neurotransmitter systems
and consciousness with which it describes the effect
of drugs to treat anxiety,depression and
Categories of drugs:
-Antipsychotics (Neuroleptics)
Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT)- brief electric shock
administered to the brain to reduce severe
depression that does not respond to drug