ATTENTION - THIS IS THE PAGE FOR THE FALL 2010 GENERAL PSYCHOLOGY CLASS. IF YOU ARE IN THE SPRING CLASS - PLEASE POST YOUR WIKI ON THE PAGE FURTHER DOWN BELOW.
- History of Psychology
- Anxiety Disorders
- Dissociative and Personality Disorders
- Mood Disorders
- Other Psychological Disorders
- Social Psychology
There have been many questions about psychology since its earliest beginnings. Some of these questions are what issues should psychology be concerned with, what research methods should be used, and should psychology focus on behavior or mental processes? Eventually, philosophers decided to use scientific methods to study and draw conclusions about thought and behavior.
In the mid 1800’s, Wilhelm Wundt used research methods to study reaction times. In 1874 he published a book titled Principles of Physiological Psychology that showed many connections between thought and behavior. He then opened the world’s first psychology lab in 1879, which was considered the start of psychology.
Psychology became well known during the late 1800’s when William James published a book that explained the idea of functionalism. James was given the title, father of American psychology, after publishing this book. Functionalism is the study of how behavior works to help people live in their environment. Functionalists believe consciousness exists as a continuous and changing process.
Sigmund Freud changed psychology in a big way, having his own theory about personality. Freud worked with patients who had ailments such as hysteria and came up with the idea that childhood experiences and the unconscious mind contribute to the development of adult personality and behavior. These unconscious thoughts are often thought to be expressed through dreams. Freud thought these disorders came from unconscious conflicts becoming extreme or unbalanced. Although Freud’s ideas weren’t all correct they had a huge impact on 20th century thought.
The next big change in psychology was during the early 20th century when behaviorism was introduced. Behaviorism deals with observable behavior rather than focusing on the conscious and unconscious mind as before. Ivan Pavlov was the first to research this topic by looking at digestive systems of dogs. In his experiments he showed that learning processes could be used to make a connection between a stimulus from the environment and a naturally occurring stimulus.
John B. Watson contributed greatly to behaviorism in 1913 when he offered his own definition of this area. He felt behaviorism is the behavior of the human being and neither definite or usable. These contributions were so great that it led to further information gained from another psychologist named B.F. Skinner. Skinner came up with the idea of operant conditioning which shows the effect punishment and reinforcement have on behavior. Although behaviorism isn’t studied as much in psychology anymore, its principles are still widely used in today’s society.
While the first half of the century focused on behaviorism and the mind, the second half of the century focused on humanistic psychology which is considered to be found by Carl Rogers. Humanistic psychology focuses directly on environmental causes over power of free will and self-determination.
Psychology has changed many times since the very beginning when Wundt created the first psychology lab. Psychology is continuously changing today and will continue to change forever. Today’s psychologists focus on a particular area rather than a whole field of study like in the past.
Child Abuse and Neglect
Courtney Balthazor and Caity Patterson
Have you ever seen a child that has too many bruises and they look suspicious? Well never look the other way about things like this. There has been many children die from child abuse because of the simple fact that people didn’t know what was going on. In the year 2005 1,760 children died from child abuse and neglect. Here are some ways to prevent it and know what is going on.
Child neglect is the most prevalent form of child maltreatment in the United States. According to the National Child Abuse and Neglect Data System (NCANDS), of the approximately 899,000 children in the United States who were victims of abuse and neglect in 2005, 62.8 percent (564,765 children) suffered from neglect alone, including medical neglect. According to NCANDS, 42.2 percent of child maltreatment fatalities in the United States in 2005 occurred as a result of neglect only, 24.1 percent as a result of physical abuse and neglect, and 27.3 percent as a result of multiple maltreatment types (USDHHS, 2007). In an independent study, Prevent Child Abuse America estimated that 1,291 children in the United States died in 2000 as a result of maltreatment, and that 45 percent of these child maltreatment fatalities were attributable to neglect (Peddle et al., 2002). NCANDS reported an increase of approximately 20,000 victims between 2004 and 2005. This is largely due to the inclusion of data from Alaska and Puerto Rico in the 2005 dataset (USDHHS, 2007). NCANDS defines neglect as “a type of maltreatment that refers to the failure by the caregiver to provide needed, age-appropriate care although financially able to do so or offered financial or other means to do so”
There are four types of Child Neglect that professionals have proved and in the following paragraphs I will describe them. They are Physical, Educational, Emotional and Medical.
Physical neglect is the majority of cases of maltreatment. Physical neglect generally involves the parent or caregiver not providing the child with basic necessities. Like they need the right amount of food, they need clean clothes and proper shelter. Failure to give the children the things they need or if you refuse to provide these thi9ngs endangers the child’s physical health, well-being, psychological growth and development. Physical neglect also includes child abandonment, inadequate supervision, rejection of a child leading to expulsion from the home and failure to provide for the child’s safety and physical and emotional needs. Physical neglect can severely impact a child’s development by causing failure to thrive, malnutrition, serious illness. Physical abuse is also obviously cuts, bruises, burns or other injuries due to the lack of supervision. They might also have a lifetime of low self-esteem.
Educational neglect involves the failure of a parent or whoever is taking care of the child to enroll a child in mandatory school age in school or provide appropriate home schooling or any needed special educational needs. Allowing a child to engage in chronic absence. Education neglect can lead to the child failing to have basic life skills, dropping out of school or continually displaying bad or disruptive behavior. It also can pose a serious threat to the child’s emotional self, physical health or normal psychological growth and development. It happens mainly when the child has special educational needs that one ignores.
Emotional and Psychological neglect go together and include actions such as doing chronic or extreme abuse towards each other in front of the child allowing the child to use drugs or drink alcohol, refusing or failing to provide needed psychological care. Constantly making fun of the child and not showing affection is one of the main causes of emotional neglect. Parents behaviors are considered to be emotional child maltreatment such as.1.) Ignoring- not responding to the child’s needs for stimulation, nurturance, encouragement and protection or failure to show the child you know he or she is there. 2.) Rejection-actively not responding to the child’s needs such as not showing affection. 3.) Verbally assaulting-calling the child names or threatening. 4.) Isolation- not letting the child has normal social contact like playing with other children or adults. 5.) Terrorizing- threatening the child with intense punishment or messing with the child’s fears to scare them. And last. 6.) Corrupting or exploiting- encouraging the child to do destructive, illegal or antisocial things by letting them know it is okay to do such things. All of these things used frequently will result to the child’s poor self-image, alcohol or drug abuse, destructive behavior or possible even suicide.
Severe neglect of an infant’s need for stimulation and nurturance can result in the infant failing to thrive and even infant death. Emotional neglect is often the most difficult situation to deal with in a legal context and is most of the time reported secondary to other abuse or neglect concerns.
Medical neglect is not providing appropriate health care for a child. It is mostly when the caregiver has enough money to do so but still doesn’t. This places the child at risk of being seriously disabled or disfigured or dying. According to NCANDS (National Child Abuse and Neglect Data) in 2005, 2 % of children (which is 17,637 children) in the united states alone were victims of Medical Neglect. Not only is it when a parent refuses medical care for a child in an emergency or the illness but also if the parent refuses medical recommendations for a child with a treatable disease or disability that makes them be put in the hospital a lot or if their body deteriorates quickly. Even if the situation isn’t an emergency the neglect can result in poor overall health and lots of medical problems. There are lots of reasons why parents wouldn’t take their kids to see medical help such as religious beliefs, fear or anxiety of a medical condition or treatment or money issues. Child Protective Services agencies will normally intervene when medical treatment is needed in a severe emergency like the child needs a blood transfusion, or if a child with a life-threatening disease is not receiving needed medical treatment like diabetes. And if the child has a chronic disease that can cause disability or disfigurement if left untreated like cataracts which need surgery. In these cases it is most likely that child Protective Services agencies may seek a court order for medical treatment in order to save a child’s life or to prevent life-threatening injury or disability.
Although medical neglect is highly correlated with poverty, there is a difference between the person taking care of the child and them not being able to base on cultural norms or the lack of financial resources and a caregiver knowing reluctance or refusal to provide care. Children and their families may be in need of services. The parent may not intentionally be neglectful. When poverty limits a parent’s resources to adequately provide necessities for the child, services may be offered to help families provide for their children.
There are lots of different ways that children have emotional stress due to child neglect and abuse. Such as structural brain changes, depression, and bad social skills.
There has been way too many children die from all these reasons when none of them are real reasons for this to happen to innocent children have to pass away. If everybody is aware of what is going on in the world maybe we can help all the children stay alive and also help the ones that lived and have side effects from it.
Autism is a serious developmental disorder that occurs within the first few years of a person’s life, generally before they are even three. According to Autism Speaks, Autism is a way of calling the complex disorders called Pervasive Developmental Disorders or PDD. Not only does autism affect the development of the brain, but the physical condition of a person. Autism is a serious disorder for those with and around it.
While there is no real answer as to how autism starts, research shows that there are multiple factors that play a role in the development of the disorder. Studies show that boys are more likely than girls to have Autism, by three to four times more. Also, identical twins are more likely to both have Autism than fraternal twins to both have the disorder.
So how does one know if a child has Autism? There are signs that will show up and stay for the parents to see. According to the Mayo Clinic, there are three key areas that are affected by Autism. These areas are: Language, Social Interaction and Behavior. Below are the symptoms broken down into the categories as described by the Mayo Clinic website.
- Child doesn’t respond when called by own name
- Lacking in eye contact
- Seems to not hear people
- Doesn’t like to be ‘snuggled’ often
- Isolates self for play
- Slow in the talking process, doesn’t begin talking at same age as others
- Struggles saying words already they already knew
- Avoids eye contact
- Unable to hold conversations
- Repeats words without any concept of how word would work in a sentence
- Routine ‘sporadic’ hand movements or rocking
- Performs specific ‘rituals’
- Inability to be sitting still, must be constantly moving
- Finds interest in moving parts of toys
- May not feel pain, but yet be sensitive to light, touch and/ sound
The above listed are just examples of some of the symptoms a child with Autism may have.
As the child grows, the symptoms can get worse and may develop to be more of a problem, when this happens it’s past time for the child to see a doctor for the disorder. The doctor would have tests for the child to be put through to see what needs to be done for said condition.
There aren’t any black and white answers as to what causes Autism, but researchers, doctors and scientists agree there is more than one reason for Autism to develop. A myriad of things could play a role in the causes. Genes are blamed more than environment in the selection of ‘why?’ There are multiple factors that could be pooled together for the reasoning, but still, no set in stone answer.
There has been thought that a link between vaccinations has caused Autism, but this idea has been denied. With any vaccination there are risks to be considered, but doctors do not blame vaccinations for increasing the probability for a child to have autism. Many people thought that the MMR (mumps, measles and rubella) shot correlated with the Autism, but studies have shown this is not true.
As for treatment of Autism, there is no cure, but there are many ways to help aid in controlling the disorder to not let it run a life. There are programs to help with the child’s communication skills. Having the Autistic child in a super structured environment at school can also help control the ‘outbreaks’ and help the child focus. Along with therapies for control, there is also a medication to help control the anxiety of the disorder, but no medication to control it.
Over the past few years, the amount of children with the disorder has increased. Scientists are working on figuring out ways to handle the disorder easily. Autism is a series condition that happens to a lot of children all over the world.
The photo shows a 'normal' brain vs. an Autistic brain.
Dreams as an Altered State of Consciousness
Dreams, or REM sleep, have been given numerous explanations throughout the years. Including Freud’s wish fulfillment theory, a method for the brain to retain information, and the idea that they have no real purpose at all. According to dictionary.com a dream is simply a succession of images, thoughts, or emotions passing through the mind during sleep. The most recent studies show that dreams are an altered state of consciousness. There are many similarities between one’s state of wakefulness and one’s state while dreaming. These similarities are even more noticeable during lucid dreaming.
The first theories of dreams were suggested by Sigmund Freud. Freud’s main purpose for dreams was the wish fulfillment theory. Meaning that, in dreams, one could act out desires that would not be appropriate in real life. He said that dreams consisted of manifest and latent content. The manifest content is the remembered dream or the literal interpretation, and the latent content is the hidden meaning of the dream.
Recent scientists, doctors, and studies believe that dreaming is not used for wish fulfillment but, instead, is an altered state of consciousness. An altered state of consciousness is defined by dream hawk.com as a significant change in what is one’s considered normal waking awareness. The altered state of consciousness is aided in dreaming by the creation of one’s own world beneath his or her closed eyelids. During REM sleep, one senses experiences and emotions that would be the same as if he or she encountered the situation occurred in the real world.
According to lucidity.com, during a state of wakefulness one’s model of the world is created from sensory input. Our senses take in current information from our surroundings. During the stages of sleep, our information is not as easily available through one’s senses; therefore, one must create a model from what remains in our mind about the real world. Often many of the things that shape our “dream world” are past experiences, motivations, wishes, and fears. This idea shows that Freud had some point behind his wish fulfillment theory; however, the wishes are not explored in dreams simply out of shame of doing them in the real world, but that they are what our mind has captured to be “real” when outside senses are turned off.
Dr. Hobson, MD, has developed numerous ideas of his own about dreams. His theory suggests that dreaming is a state of consciousness without memory. Dr. Hobson noticed that dreams have several traits that are similar to one’s state of wakeful consciousness. Some of these traits are emotional salience and features being derived from personal experience. He pointed out that even though dreams lack logic these parallel aspects show that dreams are a state of consciousness. Dr. Hobson discovered that one’s perceptions in wakefulness and dreaming are inverses of each other. In dreaming, one’s internal perception is heightened and our external perception is lowered, while in wakefulness the opposite is true. Dr. Hobson stated that dreaming is a state our brain evolves early in order to prepare itself for being wakefully conscious.
According to my-introspective.com, similar statements are true. During wakefulness, one is aware of everything that surrounds him or her. One’s senses take in a large amount of information but are not focused because the body’s senses are overloaded. Therefore, the site states, “our conscious mind is wide, but not deep and focused.” In every state of wakefulness, the mind is partly conscious and partly below the threshold of awareness. In each state, however, these levels are different.
When observing brain waves on an EEG machine as a subject travels through the various stages of sleep, the waves during wakefulness (what many people see as true consciousness) and REM sleep are vastly similar if form.
Numerous studies mention lucid dreaming as a heightened state of consciousness during REM sleep. A lucid dream is when a person realizes they are dreaming while the dream is still happening. During REM sleep, their eye muscles are still moving even though the rest of the body is paralyzed. During a study at Stanford, it was shown that one could bring the eyes and certain other physiological responses under control by a dreamer who is having a lucid dream.
Although the idea that dreams are used to fulfill wishes has been proven untrue by modern studies, Freud made some great observations for the studies of his time. In our altered state of consciousness observed by scientists and doctors today, wishes do play a role in our dreams, but many other factors do as well. One thing is for sure, dreams are not simply a multitude of images, thoughts, and emotions flashing through our brain during the REM stage of sleep, but are some form of consciousness waiting to be explored further.
Psychology Text Book
Named after Dr. Hans Asperger, an Austrian pediatrician who first described it in 1944, Asperger’s syndrome is a variant of autism. Individuals affected by this condition are often characterized by eccentric behavior, particularly during childhood, that can result in social isolation. It differs from other autism spectrum disorders by its relative preservation of linguistic and cognitive development. With effective treatment, children with Asperger's can learn to cope with their disabilities, but they may still find social situations and personal relationships challenging. Many adults with the syndrome are able to work successfully in mainstream jobs, although they may continue to need encouragement and moral support to maintain an independent life. Although not required for diagnosis, physical clumsiness and atypical use of language are frequently reported.According to the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke, Asperger’s is a developmental disorder that is often characterized by:
- limited interests or an unusual preoccupation with a particular subject, to the exclusion of other activities
- repetitive routines or rituals
- peculiarities in speech and language, such as speaking in an overly formal manner or in a monotone, or
taking figures of speech literally
- socially and emotionally inappropriate behavior, and the inability to interact successfully with peers
- problems with non-verbal communication, including the restricted use of gestures, limited or inappropriate
facial expressions, or a peculiar, stiff gaze
- clumsy and uncoordinated motor movements
Current research points to brain abnormalities as the cause of Asperger's and as of December 6th, three days ago, researchers are a step closer to developing new treatments that are tailored to the individual needs of people with Asperger’s syndrome and other types of autism. Using a functional and a diffusion MRI doctors scanned the six regions responsible for language, social, and emotional function in an attempt to diagnose Aspergers and other forms of autism early on. Blood and urine tests are also being looked at in the U.S. and abroad for the same reason. Antidepressants and other drugs are being tested but as of now therapy is the only treatment.
Operant Conditioning, which is also known as Instrumental Conditioning, is a learning technique which involves rewards and punishment to shape behavior. Through this method, an association is made between behaviors and their antecedents, or consequences. B.F. Skinner actually coined the term Operant Conditioning, and as a behaviorist he believed that internal brainwork couldn't be used to explain one' s behavior, and that instead we should only take notice to the external, and observable influences to find what affects one's behavior. This theory of his came to explain how we acquire the wide number of learned behaviors display daily!
Rewards & Punishment
The way Operant conditioning works is through both Reinforcements ( or Rewards ) and Punishment. The use of reinforcements would be to bolster or increase a given behavior, or set of behaviors.
Positive Reinforcements are given to a subject anytime he/she perform a desired action. For example, A dog is being trained to go potty on a training pad, and when he successfully relieves himself on the pad, he is given a milk bone treat. Now, the desired result would be for the dog to look to use the training pad again and again in order to earn another treat. The possibility of receiving rewards is used to increase the potential for desired behaviors.
Negative Reinforcement is also used to shape one's behavioral patterns. This method would be implemented after a given behavior in order to the strengthen other behaviors of the subject. As an example, we'll use a mouse in a special cage. Now, this cage has an electrical grid on the ground which is switched on whenever the mouse gets a drink of water. So the mouse gets his drink of water and is shocked mildly until he scurries to the other side of the cage; once he does the shock is stopped. The desired result would be for the mouse to get a drink of water and scurry away to the other side of the cage even before the shock is administered to remove the discomfort.
The use of Punishment, unlike Rewards, is used to diminish any unwanted behaviors.
Positive Punishment involves the use of unfavorable outcomes in order to weaken a behavior it is antecedent of. As an example, We have a child who makes bad grades on his/her grade report and as a result, the child is scolded, or spanked to create discomfort and a connection between this discomfort and the failing grades. We would hope that the child makes this connection and strives for better grades, fearing another scolding or spanking.
Negative Punishment works like positive reinforcements; the only difference being that removes something of importance or want from the subject. As an example we use the same child, but instead of scolding, or spanking the child, the parent would sent the child to his/her room and remove the child's television, leaving only a bed and four walls. The prospected outcome would be for the child to make a correlation between his/her bad grades and strive to get better grades to keep from having to deal with boredom.
Extinction Finally, would occur as reinforcements cease. Exactly as the name indicates, extinction is the ending of an achieved behavior. As an example, a bird who was trained to peck a button to receive food, would peck the button and when the presence of the food would cease, eventually the bird's button pushing would cease or become extinct.
Here's a link to a video depicting both Positive Reinforcements and Positive punishment.
//Big Bang Theory //- The Gothowitz Deviation
This has been your guide to the basics of Operant Conditioning!
Shelby Tyan and Adam Weber
Thorndike came up with the law of effects which states that if you reward a behavior is likely to happen again. Skinner used his starting point and came up with the Skinner box which test and record animals’ response to behaviors. He soon came up with reinforcement and punishment. “A process of behavior modification in which a subject is encouraged to behave in a desired manner through positive or negative reinforcement, so that the subject comes to associate the pleasure or displeasure of the reinforcement with the behavior.”
Thornike’s law of effect says operant conditioning is also called instrumental conditioning or instrumental learning. They first studied Thornike who observed the behavior of cats trying to escape from a home-made puzzle boxes by Thornike. At first the cats had a hard time to escape. But after some experience and trial the cats found the escape was a lot faster. His law theorized successful that the more frequently, animals were able to learn faster. Then B.F. Skinner formulated a more detail theory of operant learning was based on reinforcement and punishment. He followed the ideas of Ernst Mach. Skinner didn’t used Thornike’s theory.
There are two different types of reinforcement, positive and negative.
Positive reinforcement is when someone or something does something good; someone rewards them with some like a hug or a treat. When you have positive reinforcement, that means that someone wants that event to happen again, so that’s why we reward them.
An example of positive reinforcement would be like this, “the dolphin gets a fish for doing a trick. The worker gets a paycheck for working. The dog gets a piece of liver for returning when called. The cat gets comfort for sleeping on the bed. The wolf gets a meal for hunting the deer. The child gets dessert for eating her vegetables. The dog gets attention from his people when he barks. The elephant seal gets a chance to mate for fighting off rivals. The child gets ice cream for begging incessantly. The toddler gets picked up and comforted for screaming. The dog gets to play in the park for pulling her owner there. The snacker gets a candy bar for putting money in the machine.”
Negative reinforcement on the other hand means something that may not be so good in the first place makes you want to do something good so the bad will stop. Suck as an annoying beep to make you put your seat belt on. That beep is the negative part but once you put your seat belt on you are rewarded by the beep going away. Negative reinforcement, you also want the event to reoccur which is why someone or something gets rewarded. Negative reinforcement occurs when a behavior is reinforced by removal of a stimulus. The word "negative" does not mean "unpleasant." It means a stimulus is removed or "subtracted" from the situation as a form of reinforcement. Negative reinforcement is one of the most misunderstood concepts in all of introductory psychology. Students commonly assume that the word negative refers to something unpleasant, so they jump to the conclusion that negative reinforcement is a form of punishment. But negative reinforcement is not a form of punishment. Negative reinforcement is a form of reinforcement. It increases the frequency or probability of a behavior by taking away something bad.
An example of negative reinforcement would be, The choke collar is loosened when the dog moves closer to the trainer. The ear pinch stops when the dog takes the dumbbell. The reins are loosened when the horse slows down. The car buzzer turns off when you put on your seatbelt. Dad continues driving towards Disneyland when the kids are quiet. I'm not talking to you until you apologize!" The hostage is released when the ransom is paid. The torture is stopped when the victim confesses. "Why do I keep hitting my head against the wall? 'Cause it feels so good when I stop! The baby stops crying when his mom feeds him.
Punishment is when someone or something is punished such as put in time out, made to work extra hard, or having something taken away from them because they did something bad. Punishment is used a lot in kids and animals. Punishment can also be used in the law system by giving speeding tickets, MIP’s and DUI’s. That is making someone pay money because they were either speeding, drinking under age or driving drunk. In animals, they may be taken outside or put in a cannel if they made a mess in the house. Punishment is any change in a human or animal's surroundings that occurs after a given behavior or response which reduces the likelihood of that behavior occurring again in the future. As with reinforcement, it is the behavior, not the animal, which is punished. Whether a change is or is not punishing is only known by its effect on the rate of the behavior, not by any "hostile" features of the change.
For example, painful stimulation which would serve as a punisher in many cases serves to reinforce some behaviors of the actions.
Shaping, or behavior-shaping, is a variant of operant conditioning. Instead of waiting for a subject to exhibit a desired behavior, any behavior leading to the target behavior is rewarded. For example, Skinner (1904-1990) discovered that, in order to train a rat to push a lever, any movement in the direction of the lever had to be rewarded, until finally, the rat was trained to push a lever. Once the target behavior is reached, however, no other behavior is rewarded. In other words, the subject behavior is shaped, or molded, into the desired form. Although rejected by many orientations within the field of psychology, behavioral techniques, particularly shaping, are widely used as therapeutic tools for the treatment of various disorders, especially those affecting verbal behavior. For example, behavior shaping has been used to treat selective, or elective, mutism, a condition manifested by an otherwise normal child's refusal to speak in school. Therapists have also relied on behavior shaping in treating cases of severe autism in children. While autistic children respond to such stimulus objects as toys and musical instruments, it is difficult to elicit speech from them. However, researchers have noted that behavior shaping is more effective when speech attempts are reinforced than when speech production is expected. When unsuccessful efforts to produce speech are rewarded, the child feels inspired to make a greater effort, which may lead to actual speech. While recognizing the effectiveness of behavior shaping in the laboratory and in therapy, experts, particularly psychologists who do not subscribe to behavioral have questioned the long-term validity of induced behavior change. For example, researchers have noted that people have a tendency to revert to old behavior patterns, particularly when the new behavior is not rewarded any more. In many cases, as Alfie Kohn has written, behavior-shaping techniques used in school, instead of motivating a child to succeed, actually create nothing more than a craving for further rewards.
Sources: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Operant_conditioning; http://www.wagntrain.com/OC/Part2.htm#Ppos;
http://medical-dictionary.thefreedictionary.com/Operant+learning; http://www.psywww.com/intropsych/ch05_conditioning/negative_reinforcement.html; http://psychology.jrank.org/pages/581/Shaping.html; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Punishment_(psychology); http://www.wagntrain.com/OC/Part2.htm#Ppos
Anthony Vrbas and Emily Chessmore
Obsessive Compusive Disorder
Obsessive- Compulsive Disorder, or OCD as it is most commonly known, is an anxiety disorder that is a potentially disabling illness that traps people in an endless cycle of repetitive thoughts or actions. The person is plagued by reoccurring and distressing thoughts, images, and fears that they cannot control. Some examples are: Repetitive behavior like hand washing, counting, constant checking, or cleaning are performed with the hope of preventing obsessive thoughts or making them go away. Performing these tasks or “rituals” as some people call them, is only temporary relief. People with OCD should share their fears, feelings, and thoughts with a psychologist to help get rid of OCD.
Some signs of OCD are: plagued by persistent unwelcome thoughts or images or the urgent need to engage in certain “rituals”. For example if you have even heard or seen the TV show Monk, the detective on that show has to constantly wipe his hands after shaking hands or touching dirt. The things in his house must be straight and neat.
Some common obsessions are: fear of dirt or germs, fear of causing harm to someone, fear of making a mistake, fear of being embarrassed or behaving in a socially unacceptable manner, fear of thinking evil or sinful thoughts and the need for order, symmetry, or exactness.
Common compulsions are: repeated bathing, showering, and washing hands, the refusal to shake hands or touch doorknobs, repeatedly checking things like locks or stoves, constant counting, mentally or aloud, while performing everyday tasks, eating foods in a certain order, always arranging things in a certain way, or being stuck on words, images, or thoughts that are disturbing and won’t go away. These can affect sleep.
So what causes OCD? Researchers don’t fully understand what understand OCD but studies have shown it is a combination of biological and environmental factors. The biological research shows that there is a link between low levels of a neurotransmitter called serotonin and the development of OCD. This imbalanced can be passed from the parents to the children so OCD could be inherited. There are also some pathways that go to the brain that deals with judgment and planning. There is also a type of infection caused by the Streptococcus bacteria may also lead to the development of OCD if untreated. The environmental factors could be: abuse, change in living situation, illness, death of a loved one, work or school related changes or problems, or relationship concerns.
How common is OCD? OCD afflicts about 3.3 million adults and about one million children and adolescents in the U.S. It affects women and men equally. OCD first appears in childhood, adolescence, or early adulthood.
How is OCD diagnosed? There is no laboratory test to diagnosed OCD. The only way to diagnose OCD is by the patient’s symptoms and how often they spend performing their ritual behavior.
What is the treatment for OCD? It won’t go away by itself. The most effective way is a combination of medicine and cogitative behavior therapy. The outlook for people with OCD can be a success and they can live happy normal lives if they take medicine and go to therapy. OCD cannot be prevented, only stopped.
By: Anthony Vrbas
Emily Chessmore MWF 10:10
Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder-aka OCD
OCD is an anxiety disorder. People with this disorder have obsessions and/or compulsions. It is a potentially disabling illness that traps people in these endless cycles that the person can’t control. Rituals are performed to prevent these but the patient only experiences temporary relief. Hand washing, cleaning, bathing, counting (mentally or aloud), and checking on things, such as locks, are common rituals. People can also refuse to shake hands or touch objects that are touched by other people regularly. Constantly arranging and rearranging things in a certain way help the person feel better for a few moments before having to return to that task. Sometimes a person needs only to perform the task a certain number of times. In a particular case, a woman had an obsession with even numbers and had trouble turning on and off appliances in her house. Language is also a problem for people with OCD. They get stuck on a word and will repeat it numerous times or repeat phrases or prayers. This can potentially take up hours of the person’s day or night and interfere with their normal-day activities, such as work or spending time with family or friends.
Signs of this disorder include unwanted thoughts or the crucial need to perform their rituals. People that are obsessed with contamination by germs or have a fear of dirt may wash their hands repeatedly or always feel that they are dirty. Others are filled with doubt and, therefore, check on things over and over. Many have fears of making a mistake, causing harm to someone, being embarrassed, or behaving improperly. Several have excessive doubt which means they are in constant need of reassurance. Most have a need of order, symmetry, or exactness. Some have a fear of thinking evil thoughts. If a mom would think her son died of cancer, it would come true would be a good example of fear of evil thoughts. Some people may even be aware that these rituals are senseless, but they do not have the control over themselves to stop it.
New and improved treatments and therapies are helping many people with OCD lead fulfilling and happy lives. MTV has a show all about people with OCD. Dr. Drew helps many patients overcome their problems and get them to the point where they can have jobs again and really enjoy living life as they should be able to. Another hit series on USA Network, Monk, stars a detective with obsessive-compulsive disorder. Monk has a fear of germs and everything has to be perfect. He’s always checking on things and making sure things are as they should be. He also has a fascination of the number 100, which will be making the 100th episode even better.
OCD is a disorder that can potentially ruin lives, but if the right treatment is acquired it can hardly be noticeable. People that overcome this disorder are very strong-willed and have a big desire to lead normal lives. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder has infected millions of people in the world, but with today’s knowledge of the disorder we are able to live normal day lives even with the disorder.
Written by: Tracy Earl
Anxiety is a normal human emotion that everyone experiences at times in there life. Many people will feel anxious when faced witha problem at work or school, taking tests or even an important decision. Anxiety orders are different. Some can cause such distress that it interferes with a person's ability to lead a normal life. An anxiety disorder is a serious mental illness. For most people with anxiety disorders, worry and fear are constant and overwhelming and can be very serious.
There are many types of anxiety disorders and among those include panic disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, post traumatic stress disorder, social anxiety disorder, specific phobias, and generalized anxiety.
1) Panic Disorder- People have feelings of terror that strike suddenly and repeatedly with no warning. Symptoms of a panic attack include sweating, irregular heartbeats, chest pains, or a feeling of choking, Having a panic disorder many make the person feel like they are choking or having a heart attack.
2)Obsessive- compulsive disorder (ocd) People that have obsessive-compulsive disorder are irritated by thoughts or fears that cause them to person routine or rituals. These thoughts are called obsessions, and the rituals are called compulsions. An expample of this would include someone that is terrified of germs he or she will wash there hands constantly.
3) Post-Traumatic Stress disorder (PTSD). Is a condition that can develop following a traumatic and/or terrifying event. Some examples include rape or assault, uxexpected death of a loved one, or a natural disaster. People with this disaster have lasting and frightening thoughts and memories of the event, and tend to be emotionally numb.
4) Social anxiety disorder. Its a social anxiety disorder involves overwhelming worry and self- conciousness about everyday social situations. Being judged by others that could be embarrasing could be an example of this disorder. This is also known as social phobia.
5) Specific phobias- a phobia of a particular fear of a specific object or situation. Snakes, spiders,heights, or dogs is an example of a specific phobia. In coming in contact with a phobia it may cause the person to avoid common, everyday situations.
6) Generalized anxiety disorder- THis disorder involves excessive, unrealistic worry and tension, even if there is nothing or very little to cause the anxiet.
There are different side effects for different anxiety orders but most of the symptoms include, Nightmares, problems sleeping, an inability to be still and calm, dry mouth, Numbnuss or tingling in the hands or feet, nausea, muscule tension or dizziness.
The reason for these disorders are still unknown. Scientists are coming to the conclusion that these disorders are combination of factors, including changes in the brain and environmental stress.
Like certain illnesses, such as diabetes, anxiety disorders may be caused by chemical imbalances in the body. Studies have shown that severe or long-lasting stress can change the balance of chemicals in the brain that control mood.
There is 4 main ways to treat these disorders of at least control them. Medication, psychotherapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy or food and lifesyles.
These disorders can not be prevented but there is some things that can control them or lessen symtoms
a) stop or reduce comsumption of caffeine ( tea, sode, coffee, or chocolate)
b)Ask your doctor or pharmacisy before taking over the counter medicines of herbal remedies. Some medicines may contain chemicals that can increase anxiety.
c)Seek counseling and support after a traumatic or disturbing experience
1.4 to 2 million people in the United States have compulsive hoarding disorder.
2-3% of the general population has OCD and up to one third of those diagnosed with OCD exhibit hoarding disorder.
onset of hoarding appears earlier in women that men. However, hoarding occurs more frequently in men than women.
Hoarding can be defined as
1. The acquisition of, and failure to discard a large number of possessions that appear to be useless or of limited value.
2. An area of living space being cluttered so as to preclude activities for which those spaces were designed.
3. Significant distress or impairments in functioning caused by Hoarding.
Typical onset age of hoarding behavior is around age of 13. Although the behavior is mild and not considered a disorder.
Hoarding typically progresses and becomes a problem in ages 20-30's.
severe hoarding is found in ages 40-50's.
late onset after 40 is rare and seems to occur in people who have mild hoarding to begin with and suffer with a loss of some kind.
Types of Hoarding.
scarcity mentally hoarder
(what if the depression returns)
frugality mentality hoarder
(nothing can be wasted)
frozen indecision hoarder
(finds no decision easy)
(excess of 300 animals in a home)
some elderly people are medication hoarders. enabled by the fact that they can have many ways to obtain the drugs.
Hoarding is a complex disorder that is believed to be associated with 4 underlying characteristics.
First there are certain core vulnerabilities including emotional dysregulation in the form of depression or anxiety along with family histories of hoarding and generally high levels of perfectionism.
Second, people who hoard appear to have difficulties processing information. In particular, these difficulties appear as problems in attention (including ADHD-like symptoms), memory, categorization, and decision-making. The areas of the brain that control these functions roughly correspond to the brain regions that have been shown to activate differently in people who hoard.
Third, people who hoard form intense emotional attachments to a wider variety of objects than do people who don’t hoard. These attachments take the form of attaching human-like qualities to inanimate objects, feeling grief at the prospect of getting rid of objects, and deriving a sense of safety from being surrounded by possessions.
Fourth, people who hoard often hold beliefs about the necessity of not wasting objects or losing opportunities that are represented by objects. Additional beliefs about the necessity of saving things to facilitate memory and appreciation of the aesthetic beauty of objects contribute to the problem.
What part of the brain controls hoarding behaviors? Evidence from neuropsychological testing and neuroimaging research suggests that compulsive hoarding is characterized by abnormal activity in areas of the frontal lobe such as orbitofrontal cortex, ventromedial prefrontal cortex, and anterior cingulate cortex.
These abnormalities likely underlie the observed problems of neuropsychological functioning observed by several researchers, including problems with sustained attention, problems with memory, and problems of executive function. We propose that there is a direct connection between these disruptions of brain activity and the problems our hoarding patients encounter during routine decision-making.
Treatment for hoarding consists of.
Support groups, therapy, medication, and support from family.
by: Chris Ferguson and Myles Engel
Phobia-a persistent, irrational fear of a specific object, activity, or situation that leads to a compelling desire to avoid it.
Phobias are split up into three different groups: Social phobias, specific phobias, and agoraphobia.
Social Phobia: Being afraid of something relating to social situations. Most of the time sufferers only target a specific situation, but sometimes people can be frightened of almost any social setting. Many people suffer from “stage fright” Social phobia breaks into two smaller parts: specific social phobia and generalized social phobia.
- Specific Social Phobia: Refers to a fear of one or a couple more specific social settings. For example, a person suffering from specific social phobia might not like big crowds of people, but can deal with any other social setting.
- Generalized Social Phobia: Also known as social anxiety disorder; refers to a fear of most social situations.
Specific Phobias: Refers to a phobia about one specific panic trigger. Many people are scared of most specific phobias but to a much lesser extent than a person with a phobia.
- For example: Snakes, spiders, heights, flying, germs, injections, etc.
Agoraphobia: Means a fear of leaving your home or familiar place. This may be caused by other fears such as social embarrassment, fear of contamination or post-traumatic stress disorder.
The Top 10 most common phobias:
Arachnophobia – Fear of Spiders.
Acrophobia – Fear of Heights.
Aerophobia – Fear of being on an airplane.
Claustrophobia – Fear of having no escape or being closed in.
Mysophobia – Fear of germs.
Necrophobia – Fear of dead things.
Nyctophobia – Fear of darkness.
Ophidiophobia – Fear of snakes.
Trypanophobia – Fear of injections or hypodermic needles.
Nosophobia – Fear of contracting a disease
Astraphobia – Fear of thunder and/or lightning.
Carcinophobia – Fear of getting cancer.
Symptoms: Most phobias have the same symptoms. They range from mild anxious feelings to extreme panic attacks. The usual symptoms include:
- Shortness of breath / trouble breathing
- Chest Pains
- Accelerated heart rate / Palpitations
- Shaking / Trembling
- Choking / Trouble swallowing
- Sweating (sometimes cold sweat)
- Nausea / Upset stomach
- Feeling dizzy or lightheaded
- Numbness / Tingling sensations
- Hot and cold flashes
- Dissociation / Feelings of unreality / Being detached from yourself
- The person fears they will lose control.
- The sufferer fears they’re dying.
- Sufferer fears they’re going to faint.
- Absolute terror of the situation or object.
- Obsessing over the situation or object / Finding it hard to think about anything else.
- Desire to flee.
- Anticipatory Anxiety: Worrying about possibly running into the object or situation in the future.
According to helpguide.org, symptoms for blood, injection, or injury phobias are a little different. When people who have a blood or needle phobia are confronted with a needle or blood they react, not just with fear, but disgust also. Like most other phobias, they react with increased heart rate, but then quickly drop and become nauseas and dizzy. Fear of fainting is common in other phobias, but actually fainting only occurs with a blood, injection, or injury phobia.
There are many different situations or activities preserved in ones memory. There are good memories and bad memories. The bad memory of a traumatic situation is believed to lead a person to construct a phobia. There are many examples of this theory. For instance, if a child is bitten by a spider he or she later will fear spiders which may grow into Arachnophobia, the fear of spiders. Although upon research I discovered that Arachnophobia is believed to be a cultural phobia. In some places spiders are part of their meal therefore they are not afraid of spiders, but here in America we consider spiders dangerous and we stay away from them.
One theory is phobias develop when fear responses are reinforced or punished. Both reinforcement and punishment can be positive or negative. Positive reinforcement is the presentation of something positive, such as a parent rewarding a child for staying away from a snake. Positive punishment is the presentation of something negative, such as a child being bitten by a snake. Definitely a traumatic situation for the child that he or she will remember.
While there is no one specific known cause for phobias, it is thought that phobias run in families, are influenced by culture and how one is parented, and can be triggered by life events. Immediate family members of people with phobias are about three times more likely to also suffer from a phobia than those who do not have such a family history. If mom or dad is scared of flying, the child may be scared of flying. People whose parents either were overly protective or were distant in raising them may be at more risk of developing phobias. Phobia sufferers have been found to be more likely to manage stress by avoiding the stressful situation and by having difficulty minimizing the intensity of the fearful situation. Statistics show that almost 40% of phobias are inherited while the rest of 60% are caused by stress and traumas. (http://ezinearticles.com/?Inherited-Phobias&id=4700888) Another possible contributor to the development of phobias is classical conditioning. As it relates to phobias, in classical conditioning, a person responds to something frightening by generalizing the fear of that specific object or situation to more generalized objects or situations. For example, an individual may respond to a real threat by one dog to a fear of all dogs.
As stated before, phobias can be cultural learned, such as Arachnophobia. In America we are taught to fear spiders, and in several other countries, spiders may be part of the buffet. Also, a phobia can develop from a traumatic experience, such as a child being bit by a snake, and later in life he or she may recall the experience and grow a fear of snakes in general. Finally, a phobia can run in the family. If a child’s mother or father fears flying, then the child may be scared of flying later in life.
Arachnophobia is the fear of spiders or other arachnids such as scorpions. It is the most common form of an animal-based phobia. Most serious sufferers of arachnophobia are middle-aged and older. It is also a fact that nine out of ten sufferers are female.
People with arachnophobia feel very uneasy or panic around spiders, even though most arachnids are harmless. A picture or even an object that looks like a spider can sometimes trigger a panic attack in individuals with arachnophobia. An individual may even feel uncomfortable being in a room where they think spiders might be or if they are in a place where there are webs. It may take awhile for a person to enter a room where they know spiders are present. Only after they overcome their panic attack will they enter the room. People who suffer from arachnophobia will do everything that they can to make sure that their environment is spider-free. The reactions of people who suffer from arachnophobia seem irrational to others and sometimes even to the individual suffering from the disorder. If a panic attack happens in the presence of friends or family members the individual with often feel humiliated. Friends and family members should not play with the person’s phobia by playing tricks or pranks on the individual with the disorder.
The fear of spiders has a long history. Around the time of Christ’s birth, parts of Abyssinia were abandoned and the whole population left due to a plague of spiders. The fear of spiders is very common and while most African people fear very large spiders most Amazonian Indians do not. The Piaroa Indians actually eat larger spiders and consider them a delicacy.
Some researchers believe that the presence of venomous spiders led to the evolution of the fear of spiders and made it even easier for one to fear spiders. There are people that are more scared of spiders than others and in these extreme cases it is known as a phobia. Even though most spiders are small and seem harmless, nearly all species are venomous but only a few are dangerous to humans. Some communities such as in Papua New Guinea and South America (except Brazil, Chile, Uruguay, and Argentina), spiders are included in traditional foods. Researchers believe that this suggests that arachnophobia is more cultural and not a genetic trait.
The most common for of treatment for arachnophobia is aversion or behavior treatments. These two forms of treatment involve a mixture of education and experience with spiders. It is a fact that most people who suffer from this disorder know very little about spiders and that is why they fear them. After being educated about spiders the sufferer is able to use their own mind to counteract the fear and they are able to get over the phobia in time. Also allowing people to become familiar with spiders and letting them see that spiders are basically harmless, helps them to get over their phobia. Most treatments vary with the therapists as well as on the age and experience of the sufferer. If people would just take time to learn a little about spiders and see that they aren’t as bad as we think they are.
Acrophobia has a base word “acro”. This is greek for peak, summit and edge. This in an English dictionary means an extreme or irrational fear of heights. It belongs to a category of specific phobias that pertains to space and motion discomfort. People that suffers from acrophobia experiences a panic attack in a high place and become to agitated to get themselves down from were there at. The word Vertigo is often used to describe a fear of heights, but this is more accurately used as a spinning sensation that occurs when a person isn’t actually spinning. This can be triggered when a person looks down from a high place when he or she is standing sitting down or walking. Between 2 and 5 percent of the general population suffers from acrophobia, with twice as many women affected by it then men.
Symptoms of acrophobia can be feeling a sense of panic when very high up. While very high up one my insetinctively begin to search something to hang on to or may not trust your on sense of balance. Reactions include falling to your knees so that you feel more steady, crawling on all fours, or lowering the body. Emotionally and physically, the response to acrophobia is you may begin to shake, sweat, experience heart palpitations and even cry or yell out. You may feel terrified of falling and may become in a paralyzed state. Most people with acrophobia begin to dread situations that may cause you to spend time at height. Some people don’t even do any work or spend time on a roof, ladder, balconies, or skyscrapers.
The biggest danger that most phobias present is the risk of limiting one’s life and activities to avoid the feared situation. Like having a panic attack while high in the air could actually lead to the imagined danger of what could be the worse that could happen. The situation may be safe as long as precautions are taking place. Panicking could lead you to make unsafe moves. For people that want to know if there are treatments, there are tons of treatments to acrophobia.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy is a main treatment of choice for acrophobia. This is making the patient do behavioral techniques that expose the sufferer to the feared situation either gradually or rapidly. This teaches the client ways of stopping the panic reaction and regaining emotional control. Also now there are virtual reality that may be as effective. A major advantage of virual reality treatment is the savings in both cost and time.
Acrophobia appears to be rooted in an evolutionary safety mechanism. Nonetheless, it represents an extreme variation on a normal caution, and can become quite life-limiting for sufferers. It can also be dangerous for those who experience a full panic reaction while at a significant height. Acrophobia can share certain symptoms with vertigo. Acrophobia has been attributed like other fears. This fear usually is caused by a past traumatic experience involving heights or someone could just be thinking about falling.
Jamie Stramel and Kelsi Mccorkle-social anxiety disorder.
Social Anxiety Disorder(SAD, SAnD) also called Social Phobia (SP), is an anxiety disorder characterized by and intense fear in social situations causing considerable distress and impaired ability to function in at least some parts of daily life. Generalized social anxiety disorder typically involves a persistent, intense, chronic fear of being embarrassed or humiliated by one’s own actions. Physical symptoms often accompanying social anxiety disorder include excessive blushing, sweating, trembling, palpitations, nausea, and stammering often accompanied with rapid speech. Panic attacks may also occur under intense fear and discomfort. An early diagnosis may help minimize the symptoms and the development of additional problems, such as depression. Some sufferers may use alcohol or other drugs to reduce fears and inhibitions at social events. It is common for sufferers of social phobia to self-medicate in this fashion, especially if they are undiagnosed, untreated, or both: which could lead to alcoholism, rating disorders or other kinds of substance abuse. A person with the disorder may be treated with psychotherapy, medication, or both. Research has shown cognitive behavior therapy, whether individually or in a group, to be effective in treating social phobia.
Attention given to social anxiety disorder has significantly increased in the United States since 1999 with the approval and marketing of drugs for its treatment. Prescribed medications include several classes of antidepressants: selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors: and benzodiazepines, as well as newer antidepressants, such as mirtazapine. An herb called Kave has also attracted attention as a possible treatment.
The first mention of a psychiatric term, social phobia, was made in the early 1900s. Psychologists used the term “social neurosis” to describe extremely shy patients in the 1930s. After extensive work by Joseph Wolpe on systematic desensitization, research in phobias and their treatment grew. The idea that social phobia was a separate entity form other phobias came from the British psychiatrist Isaac Marks, in the 1960s. This was accepted by the American Psychiatric Association and was first officially included in the third edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. The DSM-IV gave social phobia the alternative name social anxiety disorder. In the 1990s, paroxetine became the first prescription drug in the U.S. approved to treat social anxiety disorder, with others following.
In cognitive models of social anxiety disorder, social-phobics experience dread over how they will be presented to others. They may be overly self-conscious, pay high self-attention after the activity, or have high performance standards for themselves. According to the social psychology theory of self-presentation, a sufferer attempts to create a well-mannered impression on others but believes he or she is unable to do so. B.F. Skinner believes that phobias are controlled by escape and avoidance behaviors. For instance, a students may leave the room when talking in front of the class (escape) and refrain from doing verbal presentations because of previously encountered anxiety attack (avoid) Major avoidance behaviors could include an almost pathological/compulsive lying behavior in order to preserve self-image and avoid judgment in front of others. Minor avoidance behaviors are exposed when a person avoids eye contact and crosses arms to avoid recognizable shaking.
Work cited: Http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/social_anxiety_disorder
Social anxiety disorder, also called social phobia, is an anxiety disorder in which a person has an excessive and unreasonable fear of social situations. Anxiety and self-consciousness arise from a fear of being closely watched, judged, and criticized by others.
The description of shyness can be found back to the day of Hippocrates around 400 B.C. Charles Darwin wrote about social context of shyness and blushing. In 1900s was the first time social phobia was mention. Social neurosis was the word to describe an extremely shy patients in 1930s. In the 1960s Isaac Marks came up with the idea that social phobia is a separate entity from all the other phobias. The American Psychiatric Association accepted the idea and in the third edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. Phobia was revised in 1989. Social Phobia has been largely ignored prior to 1985.
People that have social anxiety disorder suffer from irregular thinking, including false beliefs about social situations and the negative opinions of others. Without treatment, social anxiety disorder can negatively interfere with the person's normal daily routine, including school, work, social activities, and relationships. Also people with social anxiety disorder may be afraid of a specific situation, such as speaking in public. Most people with social anxiety disorder fear more than one social situation. Other situations that commonly provoke anxiety include eating or drinking in front of others. Writing or working in front of others. Being the center of attention. Interacting with people, including dating or going to parties. Asking questions or giving reports in groups. Using public toilets. Talking on the telephone. Social anxiety disorder may be linked to other mental illnesses, such as panic disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, and depression. In fact, many people with social anxiety disorder initially see the doctor with complaints related to these disorders, not because of social anxiety symptoms.Social anxiety disorder is the most common anxiety disorder and the third most common mental disorder in the U.S., after depression and alcohol dependence. An estimated 19.2 million Americans have social anxiety disorder. The disorder most often surfaces in adolescence or early adulthood, but can occur at any time, including early childhood. It is more common in women than in men.
The National Comorbidity Survey of over 8,000 American correspondents in 1994 revealed a 12-month and lifetime prevalence rates of 7.9 percent and 13.3 percent making it the third most prevalent psychiatric disorder after depression and alcohol dependence and the most apparent of the anxiety disorders. According to U.S. epidemiological data from the National Institute of Mental Health, social phobia affects 5.3 million adult Americans in any given year. Cross-cultural studies have reached prevalence rates with the conservative rates at 5 percent of the population. However, other estimates vary within 2 percent and 7 percent of the U.S. adult population.
Competitiveness by Political Cohort by Gender (VL=Very Liberal, L=Liberal, C=Conservative, VC=Very Conservative)
The Very Liberal females scored the lowest
Intro to Dissociative and Personality Disorders
by Jessica Koeppe
What Are They?
Dissociative disorders are psychological disorders where the conscious awareness of an individual becomes separated or split from memories, feelings or thoughts. People suffering from this disorder may lose their memory or change identities when put in stressful situations. These disorders are believed to stem from some kind of traumatic event and the disorder acts as a coping mechanism. People suffering from these kinds of disorders are often diagnosed with obsessive compulsive disorder or post-traumatic stress disorder. There are four major types of dissociative disorders:
- Dissociative Amnesia
- Dissociative Identity Disorder
- Dissociative Fugue
- Depersonalization Disorder
Personality disorders are psychological disorders that can be characterized by inflexible behavior patterns that get in the way of normal social functioning. These disorders are often very disruptive to a person's life. People suffering from these disorders may interact with people around them but do not respond emotionally. There are numerous factors that can cause these kinds of disorders but the two that are most widely believed are genetic tendencies and the environment or life situations of a person.
Who Do These Disorders Affect?
These disorders most commonly plague individuals that have experienced some kind of traumatic event in their lifetime. In the case of some personality disorders, genetics can play a large role.
Nearly 15% of Americans meet diagnostic criteria for at least one kind of personality disorder, according to a poll taken in 2001 by National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions (NESARC). According to this poll, 7.9% of Americans were suffering from obsessive compulsive disorder, 4.4% were affected by paranoid personality disorder, 3.6% by antisocial personality disorder, 3.1% from schizoid personality disorder, 2.1% from avoidant personality disorder, 1.8% histronic personality disorder, and .5% dependent personality disorder. Although this looks like quite a few disorders, borderline, schizotypal, and narcissistic disorders were excluded from this study.
Symptoms of dissociative disorders include:
- Memory loss of certain periods of time, events, and people
- Mental health issues such as amnesia or depression
- Blurred sense of identity
- A sense of detachment from oneself
- Perception of ones surroundings appears distorted or unreal
General symptom of personality disorders include:
- Mood Swings
- Social Isolation
- Alcohol or Substance Abuse
- Fits of Anger
- Suspicion of Others
- Poor Impulse Control
Specific types of personality disorders are based on similar characteristics in three categories:
- Cluster A
- Odd/eccentric thinking or behavior
- Cluster B
- Dramatic/overly emotional thinking or behavior
- Cluster C
- Anxious thinking or behavior
Risk factors for dissociative disorders include:
- Chronic emotional, physical, or sexual abuse during childhood
- Other traumatic events such as war, kidnapping, torture, or invasive medical procedures
Risk factors for personality disorders include:
- Family history of disorders or mental illness
- Childhood abuse
- Childhood neglect
- Unstable or chaotic childhood
- Loss of parents (death or traumatic divorce) during childhood
- Creative Art Therapy
- Cognitive Therapy
Personality Test: http://www.4degreez.com/misc/personality_disorder_test.mv
by Joe Monroe
Panic attics can be a symptom of anxiety disorders, and 20 percent, or 60 million adult Americans end up having panic attacks in their lifetime. Three million people in their lifetime will experience a full blown panic attack, and it usually occurs at the age of 15-19 years old. When someone has a panic attack they will sometimes develop phobias of what caused the panic attack. Panic disorders in youth and adults tend to show similarity. Teens feel as if they are not real or that they are in a dream, they feel like they are going crazy or dying. Teens are affected in a different way by panic attacks they are more likely to have a decrease in grades, school attendance, and avoiding separation of parents. Both adults and youth have more of a risk of having suicide thoughts and or actions, use of substances and depression.
Panic attacks are sudden episodes, and involve little anxiety they usually only last a few minutes and peak before 10 minutes, there is usually no real danger involved. These cases can occur with any age group, but most cases occur when people are in their late teens to mid thirties. Studies have shown that women are twice as likely to experience more panic attacks as men. During a panic attack a person may feel as if they have lost control of their body, thoughts and emotions. Panic attacks may occur after excessive caffeine, or alcohol use, and or being stressed.
Studies have shown that a panic attack can be caused by a combination of factors including biological and environmental. Panic attacks have been proven to run in families, like hair and eye color. It can be passed on by one or both parents. Stressful events in life, such as a loved one passing away can cause panic attacks. A key symptom of panic disorder, is having another panic attack. This causes problems because people fear of certain places because they have had an attack there before or are afraid of having an attack there. Symptoms of a panic attack consist of sudden attacks of fear, and nervousness, as well as sweating and heart racing. Some feel like their heart is about to jump out of their chest and begin to freak out, they also have some symptoms of having a heart attack.
Borderline Personalities Disorder
by Chessa Carter
Borderline personality disorder is a condition that negatively effect the behavior of a person. This includes impulsive actions, unstable moods and extreme mood changes, and intense or unstable relationships with others. This disorder is classified as chronic, or long term, and there is no known cause of it. Approximately two percent of adults in the world are diagnosed with this biological disorder, most of which are woman, and the numbers are increasing. Despite these numbers this disorder has received little funding or attention from the United States health care system.
There are a wide range of symptoms that people acquire from this disorder; main symptoms include displays of uncontrollable anger, feelings of depression, drug use and self inflicted injuries. Self-injury and drug use is the most common in persons who are treated for the disease. Of the twenty percent of people who suffer from the disorder who are currently in mental facilities sixty-nine percent of them exhibit self-mutilation, chemical dependency and suicide attempts. These statistics come from Michael Feldman one of the authors of the Handbook of Medical Psychiatry. Even though these are symptoms that are associated with borderline personality disorder there is no real way to diagnose it. The diagnoses are made based on psychological evaluations and the history and severity of the person’s symptoms. It is also suggested that it may also be caused through genetics.
Reasons widely range for why people suffer from this disorder, most having to do with family related problems. Abandonment in childhood, disrupted family life, poor communication within the family, and sexual abuse are main causes. Another cause that accounts for the diagnoses of twenty-five percent of people is domestic violence. As stated before females are diagnoses more often then men, approximately seventy-five percent more; this is due largely to the increasing number of sexual and domestic crimes. These crimes have increased by nearly ten thousand in the past ten years according to Michele Bogard an author published in the Journal of Marital and Family Therapy.
Patients who suffer from this disorder usually end up either in mental facilities where they are put through regular therapy for treatment or they are an outpatient of a hospital where they still attend therapy on a regular basis. The most horrifying fact is that most people, whether they go through therapy or not, end up committing taking their own lives. Eight to ten percent of people with this disease commit suicide mostly from the lack of control over clinical depression. Those who are admitted into psychiatric hospitals and go through therapeutic treatment have to do so for the rest of their lives in most cases. Studies show that patients who only go through the treatment for two or three years show little to no improvement in their situations. Along with therapy patients also are administered medication. Even though there are many suggested way to help treat the disorder there is no way to completely eliminate it.
This rising problem cannot be ignored any longer by our current health care system. With the number of persons suffering and dying from the disorder it needs to be addressed immediately. If health officials continue to turn away from this increasing problem the outcome will be nothing but horrifying.
Brittany Kammer and Melissa Crumrine
Dissociative identity disorder (DID) is defined in our book as “a rare dissociative disorder in which a person exhibits two or more distinct and alternating personalities.” This can also be referred to as multiple personality disorder also. There are four types of multiple personality disorder which are dissociative amnesia, dissociative identity disorder, dissociative fugue, and depersonalization disorder.
What people don’t know is that multiple personality disorder is a psychotic (neurosis) disorder in which a person suffering from the mental disturbance undergo different experiences and his/her personality becomes dissociated into more than one personalities. This disorder can be brought on by many different reasons such as childhood abuse, problems in brain functioning, over-exposure to some traumatic situations, and situations where mental stress and pressure are high induce vulnerability of a person to this disorder. These are just a few of the causes that bring on the disorder.
When a person has multiple personality disorder they undergo changes in personality ever few seconds. The person imitates characteristics of the person that he/she has become such as behavioral traits, name, and even history. The person can even have alters of different genders, sexual orientations, ages, or nationalities. And in some cases a person’s alter is not even human but some spiritual forces, animals, or some extra terrestrial life force. A person can have anywhere from 2 to 10 different alters and in some serious cases even hundreds.
Symptoms and signs of this disorder are lose of memory in the form of major chucks meaning they do not remember things that have happened over an extended period of time or they do not remember what happened between particular periods of time. For example, some people have forgotten everything from their childhood and have been sometimes forgot what happened during a time period of 3-4 years. Depersonalization is another symptom which is when a patient feels that their body is being dissolved and that they are outside of their body watching what is happening to it without their control of their body. They may even feel that their body is not real and is changing size, shape, or even color. Stress can trigger an alter personality to come forth making the person act and behave as someone else.
Dissociative amnesia which is also called psychogenic amnesia is a form of multiple personality disorder. It is considered a mental illness that involved disruptions, breakdowns of memory, or awareness of identity that normally operate smoothly. When these functions are disrupted, they can interfere with a person’s general functioning. This occurs when a person blocks out certain information, such as a stressful or traumatic event, leaving them unable to remember important person information. The degree of memory loss goes beyond normal forgetfulness and usually for long periods of time involving the traumatic event. The memories still exist in a person’s mind but are deeply buried and cannot be recalled. That doesn’t mean that the memoires can’t be resurfaced with an event that happens. Dissociative amnesia is more common in woman than in men and is more common during wartime or after a natural disaster. There are many different treatment options for a person that will try to bring up the painful memories in an attempt to develop new coping and life skills, restore functioning, and improve relationships that a person may have lost. Treatments include psychotherapy, cognitive therapy, medications, family therapy, creative therapies such as art or music, and clinical hypnosis.
Dissociative fugue is when a person suddenly, without warning, travels farm from home and leaves behind a past life. They show signs of amnesia and have no understanding of the reason they left. A person can travel for only a few hours to several months at a time and even thousands of miles while in a state of dissociative fugue. After some time though, a person will become confused because they cannot remember the past and they are in a place where they do not recognize. But that doesn’t mean a person will not take on a new identity, establish a new home, and create ties with the new community that they are in. Dissociative fugue only affects 0.2% of the population and they are usually adults. More people may experience this though because of a serious accident, wars, natural disasters, or highly traumatic or stressful events. Treatment for this is usually psychotherapy which can involve hypnosis. After a person has been treated and is remembering they usually feel grief, depression, fear, anger, and remorse. The outcome is usually good for a person and they usually have a quick recovery.
Depersonalization disorder is marked by feeling disconnected or detached from a person’s body or their thoughts. A person will feel that they are having an out of body experience and watching what is happening to them but they do not lose contact with reality. This can only last a few minutes to years. Little is known about what caused this disorder but it is thought that biological and environmental factors may cause it. Like all the other disorders stress or a traumatic event can bring on the disorder. Depersonalization disorder usually occurs though in a dangerous situation such as assaults, accidents, or a serious illness. Treatment for this disorder is similar to dissociative amnesia.
Even though we may all think that multiple personality disorder would be funny or even fun to have but for the people that actually have it can be life changing.
Bipolar disorder — sometimes called manic-depressive disorder — causes mood swings that range from of the lows of depression to the highs of mania. When you become depressed, you may feel sad or hopeless and lose interest or pleasure in most activities. When your mood shifts in the other direction, you may feel euphoric and full of energy. Mood shifts may only occur a few times a year, or as often as several times a day. In some cases, bipolar disorder causes symptoms of depression and mania at the same time.
Although bipolar disorder is a disruptive, long-term condition, you can keep your moods in check by following a treatment plan. In most cases, bipolar disorder can be controlled with medications and psychological counseling.
The exact symptoms of bipolar disorder vary from person to person. For some people, depression causes the most problems; for other people manic symptoms are the main concern. Symptoms of depression and symptoms of mania or hypomania may also occur together. This is known as a mixed episode.
Bipolar disorder is divided into several subtypes. Each has a different pattern of symptoms. Types of bipolar disorder include bipolar I disorder, bipolar II disorder, and cyclothymia. These are the three main types of bipolar disorder.
Bipolar I disorder has the most severe symptoms which include severe mood swings that cause significant difficulty in your job, school and relationships. People with bipolar I disorder have mood swings that range from severe depression to severe mania. The manic episodes can be very severe and dangerous.
Bipolar II disorder is less severe than bipolar I disorder. People may have an elevated mood, irritability and some changes in their functioning, but generally they can carry on with their normal daily routine. Instead of full-blown mania, they have hypomania — a less severe form of mania. In bipolar II, periods of depression typically last longer than periods of hypomania.
Cyclothymia is a mild form of bipolar disorder without the severe mood swings. With cyclothymia, hypomania and depression can be disruptive, and does effect the daily life of people dealing with it because they don’t know when and how bad their mood swings will be.
Sometimes people with bipolar have episodes when they feel extremely sad, hopeless, anxious, or confused. When these emotions get too intense, the person may harm themselves with acts of self-injury. Self-injury is an injurious attempt to cope with overpowering negative emotions, such as extreme anger, anxiety, and frustration. It is usually not a one-time act.
Treatment for bipolar disorder most often includes a combination of a mood-stabilizing drug and psychotherapy. Although drug treatment is primary, ongoing psychotherapy is important to help patients better cope with their condition. Doctors often treat the mania symptoms associated with bipolar disorder with one set of drugs, and use other drugs to treat depression. Certain drugs are also used for maintaining a steady mood over time.
Clinical depression is mood disorder that causes sadness, low self esteem, and loss of interest. All age groups can be affected with this disorder but it is most common between the ages of twenty and fifty. Usually people are treated with medication called an antidepressant or receive counseling. In the most severe cases patients are institutionalized to get further help. Non-depressed people tend to live longer and are less likely to get sick than those who are depressed.
Those with depression are affected in all aspects of their life. Relationships with family and friends, work, and overall happiness are hurt whenever depression sets in. It can have many symptoms including times of sadness and loss of interest in activities that used to be enjoyable. Also, 80 percent of depressed people experience insomnia, the inability to sleep, and another 15 percent of people are the opposite where they over sleep and stay in bed for long periods of time. The depressed usually have changes in appetite as well, where they either eat way too much or barely eat enough. People with depression may also seem lazy, but it is because they are constantly fatigued and never have any energy. They may also have thoughts of worthlessness and suicide, 3.4 percent of patients commit suicide and depression accounts of almost half of all suicides.
No one really knows what causes depression, but there are many theories. First are biological causes, where the brain may undergo many changes that may ultimately lead to depression. Another cause is neurotransmitter problems that may lead mood changes. Also, changes in hormone levels due do medical problems may be the cause. Some scientists believe depression be inherited. If someone in your family has depression you are more likely to have the disorder. Lastly, some theorize depression is linked to tragic life events such as death of a close family member or traumatic childhood events.
Before you can receive treatment for depression testing and procedures need to be done to find all the problems. First, a physical exam is done checking weight, bodily functions, and vital signs. Then testing begins where hormones and blood count are checked to make sure everything is normal. After that the patient will undergo a psychological evaluation, checking for signs of depressions and other symptoms.
There are two major treatments of depression, medication and psychotherapy. Many different medications are available, and each affects different hormones and neurotransmitters. Everyone is different, so it may take a while to find the medication that can help. In psychotherapy the patient will receive counseling, talking about personal problems and thoughts they are having. In therapy goals will be set and moods can change.Depression isn’t something you can avoid or get over, but you can cope by taking care of yourself both physically and mentally. If you see signs of depression in anyone you know, try to get them help or just offer them support. Depression is a serious disorder, and no one should take it lightly.
Timothy Cude and Alex Torres
Clinical depression, or dysthymic disorder, is a psychological illness that involves the brain. 14.8 million Americans currently endure depression, women are predominantly the sufferers (MDD 1). Depression is not just a period of feeling down, it is medical condition that can change the way people think, feel, and behave. The symptoms interfere with daily life and should not go without treatment(Nemade,Reiss,Dombeck 1).
The symptoms affect people of all ages, but usually first occur between the ages of 15 and 30. Most include: feeling sad or empty for most of the day, “loss of interest or pleasure in activities that used to be enjoyable, significant weight loss (when not dieting) or weight gain; decrease or increase in appetite, difficulty sleeping or sleeping too much, feelings of inappropriate guilt or worthlessness, and thinking about suicide.” (Symptoms 1).
Depression “probably results from a combination of genetic, biochemical, environmental, and psychological factors.” Studies have shown that the imbalance of neurotransmitters in the brain influence a person’s mood (Overview 1). Neurotransmitters are chemical messengers that are released and received from nerve cells called neurons. Neurons constantly exchange neurotransmitters to each other to keep the brain functioning. “Depression has been linked to problems or imbalances in the brain with regard to the neurotransmitters serotonin, norepinephrine, and dopamine.” Serotonin is involved in regulating physiological functions, including eating, sleep, mood, sexual behavior, and aggression. “Current research suggests that a decrease in the production of serotonin by these neurons can cause depression in some people, and more specifically, a mood state that can cause some people to feel suicidal.” In the 1960’s, people believed that a deficiency of norepinephrine in certain areas of the brain was the culprit for depressed mood. Modern research has proved that indeed there is a tendency for depressed people to have lower levels of norepinephrine. “For example, autopsy studies show that people who have experienced multiple depressive episodes have fewer norepinephrinergic neurons than people who have no depressive history.” The third neurotransmitter that is linked to depression is dopamine. Dopamine bears the crucial task of regulating our ability to obtain a sense of pleasure, as well as to seek out rewards. Scientist believe that depressed people do not get the same sense of pleasure out of people or activities that they did before becoming depressed due to low levels of dopamine (Nemade 1).
Depression is a complex disease. There are many causes of the depression; physical, sexual, or emotional abuse, stress in the workplace, and sadness from the death of a loved one. It is believed that a family history of depression may increase the risk into the next generation. “Nearly 30% of people with substance abuse problems also have major or clinical depression.”
Depression is not curable, but it is treatable. Antidepressants, psychotherapy, or a combination of both elements can treat symptoms for most patients. In conclusion, clinical depression is a very real and serious condition; those that have family, friends, church family, or co-workers that have depression should treat their depressed counterpart with care and support.
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that makes it difficult for people to tell the difference between real and unreal experiences, to think logically, to have normal emotional responses, and to behave normally in social situations. It is also called split personality disorder, and it affects about 1% of the population. Many people reports hearing voices in their head, having bugs crawl on their skin, or experience paranoia.
What are the different types of schizophrenia?
*Paranoid schizophrenia: The individual is preoccupied with one or more delusions or many auditory hallucinations. (Bugs crawling everywhere or voices in head)
*Disorganized schizophrenia: Major symptoms are disorganized speech and behavior (saying things that don’t make sense to a normal person but makes sense to them), as well as flat or inappropriate emotions/ actions (zombie like with no feelings or laughing at a funeral)
*Catatonic schizophrenia: The person with this type of schizophrenia primarily has at least two of the following symptoms: difficulty moving, resistance to moving, excessive movement, abnormal movements, and/or repeating what others say or do.
*Undifferentiated schizophrenia: This is characterized by episodes of two or more of the following symptoms: delusions, hallucinations, disorganized speech or behavior, catatonic behavior or negative symptoms.
*Residual schizophrenia: Positive symptoms of schizophrenia (delusions, paranoia, or heightened sensitivity) are absent; the sufferer only has negative symptoms (withdrawal, disinterest, and not speaking).
What are the causes of schizophrenia?
*Schizophrenia is not directly passed from one generation to another genetically, and there is no single cause for this illness. Rather, it is the result of a complex group of genetic, psychological, and environmental factors.
*If the mother had an infection during the pregnancy this increases the risk of the child getting it. However, most women get the flu during their pregnancy and 98% of children did not develop schizophrenia. There is strong evidence to support that some people inherit a predisposition to this disorder.
*Hard times in life that really impacted a person (the loss of a parent, poverty, bullying, witnessing parental violence, emotional/ sexual abuse, physical/emotional neglect ect.)
*Dopamine Over activity: Creates hallucinations and paranoia
*Abnormal Brain Activity and Anatomy: Some schizophrenics have low activity in the brains frontal lobes, which are important foe reasoning, planning, and problem solving. Frontal lobe neurons also do not fire correctly. The brain has large fluid- filled areas with shrinkage of cerebral tissues, and enlarged brain ventricles.
What are the signs and symptoms?
*Delusions: people are out to get them, an object is sending them messages, believes they are famous or have powers (flying), believes their thoughts are being controlled by an outside source (planting thoughts in their head).
*Hallucinations: involve 5 senses but auditory and visual are the most common
*Disorganized speech: have trouble maintaining a train of thought, say illogical things, shift rapidly from topic to topic with no connection between the topics, make up words, repeat certain words, and try to rhyme
*Disorganized behavior: decline in overall in daily functioning, inappropriate emotional responses, weird behavior, lack of impulse control
*Negative Symptoms: flat (lack of emotional expression/ blank stare), lack of interest, lack of self care, unaware of the environment, difficulties with speech (can’t carry a conversation)
*Positive Symptoms: delusions, hallucinations, disorganized speech, and disorganized behavior
Negative symptoms of schizophrenia, which refer to normal behaviors that are absent, positive symptoms, refer to abnormal behaviors that are present.
Video of Childhood Schizophrenia
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To elaborate on the signs and symptoms, there are many things that play into these. Treatment helps relieve many symptoms of schizophrenia, but most people who have the disorder cope with symptoms throughout their lives. However, many people with schizophrenia can lead rewarding and meaningful lives in their communities. What are the symptoms of schizophrenia?
The symptoms of schizophrenia fall into three broad categories: positive symptoms, negative symptoms, and cognitive symptoms
Positive symptoms are psychotic behaviors not seen in healthy people. People with positive symptoms are not using realistic ideas. These symptoms are not necessarily consistent every day, they may come and go. Sometimes they are severe and at other times they are not so bad, depending on whether they are getting treatment. Positive symptoms include:
Hallucinations are things a person sees, hears, smells, or feels that no one else can see, hear, smell, or feel. "Voices" are the most common type of hallucination in schizophrenia. Many people with the disorder hear voices. The voices may talk to the person about his or her behavior, order the person to do things, or warn the person of danger. Sometimes the voices talk to each other. People with schizophrenia may hear voices for a long time before family and friends notice the problem. Other types of hallucinations include seeing people or objects that are not there, smelling odors that no one else detects, and feeling things like invisible fingers touching their bodies when no one is near.
Delusions are false beliefs that are not part of the person's culture and do not change. The person believes delusions even after other people prove that the beliefs are not true. People with schizophrenia can have delusions that seem weird, such as believing that neighbors can control their behavior with magnetic waves. They may also believe that people on television are directing special messages to them, or that radio stations are broadcasting their thoughts aloud to others. They may have paranoid delusions and believe that others are trying to harm them, such as by cheating, harassing, poisoning, spying on, or plotting against them or the people they care about.
Movement disorders may appear as agitated body movements. A person with a movement disorder may repeat certain motions over and over. These people may also become Catonic. Catatonia is a state in which a person does not move and does not respond to others.
Negative symptoms are associated with disruptions to normal emotions and behaviors. These symptoms are harder to recognize as part of the disorder and can be mistaken for depression or other conditions. These symptoms include the following:
•"Flat affect" (a person's face does not move or he or she talks in a dull or monotonous voice)
•Lack of pleasure in everyday life
•Lack of ability to begin and sustain planned activities
•Speaking little, even when forced to interact.
People with negative symptoms need help with everyday tasks. They often neglect basic personal hygiene. This may make them seem lazy or unwilling to help themselves, but the problems are symptoms caused by the schizophrenia.
Cognitive symptoms are subtle. Like negative symptoms, cognitive symptoms may be difficult to recognize as part of the disorder. Often, they are detected only when other tests are performed. Cognitive symptoms include the following:
•Poor "executive functioning" (the ability to understand information and use it to make decisions)
What are treatments for schizophrenia and the side effects of those treatments?
While there are a number of helpful treatments available, medication remains huge in treatment for people with schizophrenia. These medications are often known as antipsychotics this is because they help decrease the intensity of psychotic symptoms. Many health-care professionals prescribe one of these medications. Generally they also prescribe schizophrenic people with one or more other psychiatric medications to increase their quality of life.
Medications that are thought to be particularly effective in treating positive symptoms of schizophrenia include olanzapine (Zyprexa), risperidone (Risperdal), quetiapine (Seroquel), ziprasidone (Geodon), aripiprazole (Abilify), paliperidone (Invega), and asenapine (Saphis). These medications are called second-generation antipsychotics. They are known for having the ability to work quickly compared to many other psychiatric medications. As a group of medications, side effects that occur most often include sleepiness, dizziness, and increased appetite. Weight gain, which may be associated with higher blood sugar levels, elevated blood lipid levels, and sometimes even increased levels of a hormone called prolactin, may also occur. Although older antipsychotic medications in this class like haloperidol (Haldol), perphenazine (Trilafon), and molindone (Moban) are more likely to cause muscle stiffness, shakiness, and very rarely uncoordinated muscle twitches (tardive dyskinesia) that can be permanent. Also, more recent research over all antipsychotic medication seems to show that the older (first-generation) antipsychotics are just as effective as the newer ones and have no higher rate of people stopping treatment because of any side effect the medications cause. Not all medications that treat schizophrenia in adults have been approved for use in treating childhood schizophrenia.
Mood-stabilizer medications like lithium (Lithobid), divalproex (Depakote), carbamazepine and lamotrigine (Lamictal) can be useful in treating mood swings that sometimes occur people who have a diagnosable mood disorder in addition to psychotic symptoms (for example, schizoaffective disorder, depression in addition to schizophrenia). These medications may take a bit longer to work compared to the antipsychotic medications. Some (for example, lithium, divalproex, and carbamazepine) require watching blood levels, and some can be associated with birth defects when taken by pregnant women.
Antidepressant medications are the primary medical treatment for the depression that can often accompany schizophrenia. Examples of antidepressants that are commonly prescribed for that purpose include serotonergic (SSRI) medications that affect serotonin levels like fluoxetine (Prozac), sertraline (Zoloft), paroxetine (Paxil), citalopram (Celexa), and escitalopram (Lexapro); combination serotonergic/adrenergic medications (SNRIs) like venlafaxine (Effexor) and duloxetine (Cymbalta), as well as bupropion (Wellbutrin), which is a dopaminergic (affecting dopamine levels) antidepressant.
Despite its stigmatized history, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) can be a great treatment option for people whose schizophrenia has not responded to a number of medication trials and psychosocial interventions.
When treating pregnant individuals with schizophrenia, health-care practitioners take great care to balance the need to maintain the person's more stable thoughts and behavior while minimizing the risks that medications used to treat this disorder may present. While some medications that treat schizophrenia may carry risks to the fetus in pregnancy and during breastfeeding, careful monitoring of how much medication is administered and the health of the fetus and of the mother can go a long way to protecting the fetus from any such risks, while maximizing the chance that the fetus will grow in the healthier environment afforded by an emotionally healthy mother.
Courtney Hart and TeeJay Priest
Use of terminology for ADHD and ADD are often confusing and misleading. As is the definition, ADHD is a neurobehavioral disorder meaning it is a combination of ‘wiring’ issues in the brain (neuro) along with behavioral problems. It has been confused with learning disabilities that are actually a neurological, ‘wiring,’ disability alone. However understand that ADHD does in fact interfere with learning. Disorganization, poor patience, hyperactivity, impulsivity, lack of focus and motivation in school and beyond the school years are classic examples of the symptoms of ADHD. Caused by faulty chemicals and differences in the structure of the brain, ADHD if correctly diagnosed cannot be cured but can be treated.
ADHD has several obvious and unobvious characteristics that describe the whole of this neurobehavioral disorder. When all the characteristics and their symptoms are combined, both aspects of the neuro (brain) and behavioral problems are explained.
Inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity are the obvious main characteristics of the three categories of the term ADHD. ADHD Combined Type, shows all three characteristics. ADHD Inattentive Type and ADHD Hyperactive-Impulsive Type are the last two types. Doctors use these three terms to medically describe and categorize individuals who are affected.
Teachers use the more common terms, ADD and ADHD. ADD refers to ADHD Inattentive Type because it describes an individual who does not show the hyperactive characteristic. ADHD refers to ADHD Combined Type and ADHD Hyperactive-Impulsive Type because in both these types an individual shows the hyperactive characteristic.
Inattention symptoms include; lack of focus, sluggish, distracted, easily bored, confused and disorganized. This is the hardest to detect because it is not necessarily disruptive or noticed by others. Inattention is the characterization of ADD or ADHD Inattentive Type.
Hyperactivity symptoms include; high levels of activity, overly physical and or verbal, restless, loud and disruptive. Social, work, and educational experiences can be greatly affected by this characterization due to the level of disruptive behavior. Hyperactivity is the characterization of the commonly known ADHD, ADHD Combined Type, and ADHD Hyperactive-Impulsive.
Impulsive symptoms include; difficult to restrain one’s own behaviors and responses, and prefer speed to accuracy. In an individual displaying this characterization potentially stressful, risky, situations can be created; that could interfere with social, work, and educational experiences. Impulsivity is the characterization of the commonly known ADHD, ADHD Combined Type, and ADHD Hyperactive-Impulsive.
Neurotransmitter deficits impact behavior, weak executive functioning (key cognitive skills), impaired sense of time, sleep disturbance, developmental delay, rewards and punishment not learned easily, coexisting conditions, serious learning problems, low frustration tolerance are the unobvious characteristics. Most of these are self explanatory.
Weak executive functioning symptoms include; working memory and recall, activation, alertness, controlling emotions, and complex problem solving. These are key cognitive skills.
Neurotransmitter deficit symptoms that affect behavior include; inefficient levels of neurotransmitters (dopamine, norepinephrine, and serotonin) that result in reduced brain activity on thinking tasks.
Three proposed causes of ADHD have been determined, “low levels of certain neurotransmitters (chemical messengers in the brain), prenatal and postnatal abnormalities, and heredity” (Essentials of Life-Span Development Pg. 202.)
The cause of ADHD can actually been seen in the brain. A normal brain sends electrical impulses from on end of a nerve cell to the other. When it travels down the neuron, it triggers a chemical reaction at the receptor genes on the next neuron, so that it is ready to receive the message. The space between neurons, synapse, messages much jump across this. Neurotransmitters are released at the synapse to help the message move across. Once the message has passed, the neurotransmitter is taken back up into the neuron awaiting the next message.
A brain with ADHD doesn’t work exactly right. The message travels through the nerve cell fine but it doesn’t always cross the synapse to the second neuron. It is thought that this problem is caused by a chemical deficiency in neurotransmitters. The ones in question are dopamine and norepinephrine. Another one thought to be involved is serotonin, when these neurotransmitters are not efficient inattention, distractibility, aggression, depression, and irritability may result.
It can be caused by environmental trauma, exposure to lead, or having a mother who drinks or smokes during pregnancy, may cause ADHD. Children living below the poverty level have the highest rate of ADHD, 14 percent (TEENAGERS with ADD and ADHD Pg. 11.)
It can also be passed down through genes four out of five times this is the case. It is actually one of the most inherited childhood disorder. If one parent has ADHD there is a 57 percent chance the couple will have a child with ADHD (TEENAGERS with ADD and ADHD PG. 27.)
The Diagnosis of ADHD is not “official.” A licensed counselor, psychologist, or physician will compare the teens behavior with characteristics listed under each of the types of ADHD in the DSM-IV-TR. If the teen has a sufficient number of the characteristics he or she can be diagnosed with ADHD, this means that it is serious enough to interfere with child.
Like we have said before there is no cure for ADHD but there are treatments to help lessen the degree of the disease. No single case is the same and options should be discussed with a healthcare provider. There are medications to help, behavioral interventions, and even diet and exercise.
Stimulant medications are effective because the increase the supply of neurotransmitters especially dopamine and norepinephrine. These are the main 2 neurotransmitters in question that are said to be the cause.
Behavioral interventions have to do with counseling and changing the environment to more suit the child. Such has giving the child tasks involving movement, and change work sites frequently to keep the child focused. Another way is to break up the assignment into small chunks and give the child frequent breaks.
Diet and exercise, for many years people have said that these 2 can treat mostly everything. In this case they are right. There are some foods that for a reason no one has figured out increase hyperactivity, such as food coloring, if your child exhibits this the best choice would be to go all organic. Exercise does a lot more than someone would think, first it immediately elevates dopamine and norepinephrine and keeps them up for a while, a lot like stimulant medication. It also works to wake up the frontal cortex which stills impulsivity. Also, it helps them learn better by keeping them relaxed and heightening their focus. Maybe taking out P.E. classes are a bad thing.
ADHD is a neurobehavioral disorder in which the neurotransmitters, involved in regulating behavior, cannot communicate properly, resulting in behavioral problems. It cannot be cured but it can be treated.
Zeigler Dendy M.S., Chris A. Teenagers with ADD and ADHD a Guide for Parents and Professionals. Bethesda, MD: Woodbine House, Inc. 2006. Book.
add.about.com. about.com. nd. Web. November 2009.
ldanatl.org/aboutld/teachers/understanding/adhd.asp. Learning Disabilities Association of America. nd. Web. November 2009.
Causes of ADHD. About.com. nd. Web Video. November 2009.
Delusions of Parasitosis
What is it?
Delusions of Parasitosis is a psychiatric disorder in which people who appear normal believe that their skin is infested with parasites such as lice, fleas, spiders, worms and other parasites. Most patients describe the infestation as being on or just under the skin, in or around body openings, or internal. They often believe that the parasites are also widespread in the environment, especially in their homes. Someone suffering from this disorder might put things such as pieces of skin, lint or other debris in Ziploc bags or saran wrap because they believe they are infected with parasites. They then take them to the Dr. to be identified and when the results are negative the patient gets angry and usually goes to another doctor.
This disorder has also been associated with psychological disorders such as schizophrenia, obsessive compulsive disorder, bipolar disorder, depression and anxiety disorder. Amphetamine and cocaine users may also suffer from this disorder.
Results of this Disorder
Patients complain of itching, burning, or a crawling sensation under their skin. Appearance of the skin may range from having no lesions to minor scratches to ulcers. Scratching or using dangerous erosive chemicals on the skin causes these lesions. In severe cases of Delusional Parasitosis self-mutilation can occur. The wounds appear in areas easily reached by the patient, where they have attempted to scratch out the so called parasites.It is also not uncommon to obsess with cleaning their home. Patients often keep detailed records of their findings. In some cases, the patient’s medical history is convincing enough that family members share the delusions as well.
Who it occurs in?
Delusions of parasitosis occur most commonly in white middle-aged or older women, although the condition has been reported in all age groups and in men. It is also more common in white people than any other race
Why it occurs?
The cause of delusions of parasitosis is unknown, but it is possibly related to neurochemical pathology. The use of amphetamines and cocaine increase the chance of this disorder along with being affected by depression, schizophrenia, social isolation and sensory impairment.
1. Take a careful case history.
2. Perform a complete physical examination and laboratory evaluation, including skin scrapings and/or biopsies, blood counts, chemistry profile, thyroid function tests, and vitamin B12 levels.
3. Rule out other medical conditions
4. Work with entomologists or parasitologists to rule out true infestations
5. Rule out organic causes like allergies.
6. Rule out history of drug abuse
Treatment is very challenging because patients do not believe that they have a psychological disorder. Success of treatment depends on the doctor patient relationship and it is crucial to gain the trust of the patient. The only clear method to clear the delusions of parasitosis is the administration of psychotropic medications. If the sensation of itch is related to some actual disease or substance the disease can be treated, or the substance causing the sensation can be eliminated.
"Delusions of Parasitosis: Treatment & Medication - EMedicine Psychiatry." EMedicine - Medical Reference. Web. 05 Dec. 2010. <http://emedicine.medscape.com/article/1121818-treatment>.
"Delusions of Parasitosis." Welcome to the American Osteopathic College of Dermatology. Web. 05 Dec. 2010. <http://www.aocd.org/skin/dermatologic_diseases/delusions-of-parasitosis.html>.
"Delusory Parasitosis - Minnesota Dept. of Health." Minnesota Department of Health. Web. 05 Dec. 2010. <http://www.health.state.mn.us/divs/idepc/dtopics/pests/dp.html>.
Effects of Autism on Families
Autistic children tend to have a hard time developing socially. For the most part, if their autism is severe enough, they tend to live in their own little world. Some parents choose not to invite autistic children and their families to events; for fear their child may “catch” autism. The noises they make and things that autistic children sometimes do can freak other kids out, which makes those parents even less likely to invite them back. Simple tasks such as transitioning from play time to meal time are hard sometimes hard for autistic children to make, which makes these times very stressful on parents and siblings who have to be patient and wait for the autistic child to be ready to function and make that transition. It makes it hard to even have family outings anymore.
Autism doesn’t only take a toll on a family’s social outings. It takes a huge emotional toll, especially on the parents. Parents tend to feel a close emotional bond with their children. But, with autistic children who are unable to sustain those close relationships because of communication barriers and unsocial behavior, parents can’t form those close emotional bonds. This puts a stress on both their relationship with their children and also with their spouses. Siblings of children with autism generally have trouble forming relationships as they get older too. They tend to act and out and become aggressive towards others around the age of ten. However, research has shown that some siblings of autistic children have a higher level of maturity and self-reliance that other kids don’t have. Their parents have to spend so much time worrying about the autistic child in their household that the siblings will have to pretty much take care of themselves.
Many doctors have been working with the Gluten-Free/Casein-Free diet in order to reduce the symptoms of autism. Trying to use this diet in families requires that everyone in the family has to be on the same diet. It can cost money which puts a monetary stress on parents to go along with the emotional and social stress that autistic children place on them. For most children their symptoms will improve with time while on this diet. It has also shown a positive effect on other children and members of the family as far as allergies and digestive problems go.
There is not a cure for autism. That statement alone puts a huge amount of stress on parents and siblings of autistic children. People can try interventions, medications, or other therapies such as the GF/CF diet. Treatment and medication can help as the child gets older, but people with autism will never be completely “normal.” These children can be withdrawn, depressed, antisocial; they can mix up their words or repeat them a lot. Many different symptoms of autism can be shown or repressed, it just depends on the child.