Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

PS1000: Introduction to Abnormal Psychology

Similar presentations

Presentation on theme: "PS1000: Introduction to Abnormal Psychology"— Presentation transcript:

1 PS1000: Introduction to Abnormal Psychology
Dr Claire Gibson School of Psychology, University of Leicester

2 Introduction to abnormal psychology
Introduction to mood disorders and anxiety disorders

3 Why study abnormal behaviour?
At the centre of mental disorders Psychopathology the field concerned with the nature, development and treatment of psychological disorders As psychologists; we have to overcome our own (and work to change others) preconceived notions of mental disorder and abnormality Stigma; beliefs and attitudes held by a society ascribed to groups not considered ‘normal’ Sadly, mental illness is one of the most stigmatised conditions of the 21st century

4 What is abnormal behaviour?
Difficult to define Contains several characteristics ‘A clinically significant behavioural or psychological syndrome or pattern that occurs in an individual that is associated with present distress or disability or with a significant increased risk of suffering, death, pain, disability, or an important loss of freedom. In addition, this syndrome or pattern must not be merely an expectable and culturally sanctioned response to a particular event, e.g. the death of a loved one. Whatever its original cause, it must currently be considered a manifestation of a behavioural, psychological, or biological dysfunction in the individual.’ DSM-IV

5 Personal distress A person’s behaviour may be considered abnormal if it causes them distress e.g. a child with problems paying attention may feel distress But, not all abnormal behaviour causes distress e.g. a person with antisocial personality disorder may treat others coldheartedly or break the law without any remorse

6 Disability Impairment in some important area of life (e.g. work or personal relationships) E.g. substance-related disorders are defined, in part, by the social or occupational disability created by substance abuse But, not all disorders involve disability

7 Violation of social norms
widely held beliefs and attitudes that people use (consciously or intuitively) to make judgments of behaviour in terms of; good-bad, right-wrong, acceptable-unacceptable Behaviour that violates social norms might be classified as abnormal But, this definition is too broad e.g. criminals violate social norms Not all abnormal behaviour violates social norms e.g. anxiety disorders Social norms vary immensely across cultures and ethnic groups

8 Dysfunction Wakefield (1992) proposed that mental disorder could be defined as harmful dysfunction This definition has two components; A value judgment (harmful) Objective, scientific component (dysfunction) A judgment that a behaviour is harmful requires some standard (social norms) Dysfunction = internal mechanism unable to perform its natural function But, the internal mechanism that is dysfunctional in mental disorders is usually unknown

9 Dysfunction DSM-IV-TR
Dysfunction = behavioural, biological or psychological dysfunction supported by current evidence Dissociative disorders, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, psychotic disorders, eating disorders, developmental disorders, personality disorders, etc. In many cases there is no single accepted cause of mental disorders although often accepted in terms of a diathesis-stress model and biopsychosocial model.

10 Diathesis-stress model
Explains behaviour as result of biological and genetic factors (‘nature’) and life experiences (‘nurture). Assumes that a disposition to a disorder results from a combination of genetics and early learning (‘di’) A biological or genetic vulnerability (diathesis) interacts with the environment and life events (stressors) to trigger abnormal behaviours. ↑vulnerability - ↓stress = abnormal behaviour ↓vulnerability - ↑ ↑stress = abnormal behaviour

11 Biopsychosocial (BPS) model
States that a range of biological, psychological and sociological factors all play a significant role in human functioning in the context of disease/illness. In contrast to traditional reductionist biomedical models of disease Biological = neural mechanisms Psychological = stress, anxiety, personality traits Social = peer pressure/relationships, culture

12 History of psychopathology and its treatments
Dr José Prados (PS2015) e.g. exorcism Evolution of contemporary thought (late 18th/early 19th century) – biological and psychological approaches to the causes and treatments of mental disorders.

13 Today’s treatments of mental health issues
Care in the community The biggest political change in mental healthcare in the history of the NHS Movement away from isolation of the mentally ill in Victorian asylums towards their integration in the community Aim = to ‘normalise’ mental health disorders and remove stigma

14 Care in the community Since the 1960’s
Change in attitude towards treatment of the mentally ill, civil rights campaigns 1959 Mental Health Act – abolished distinction between psychiatric and other hospitals Challenges to historic treatment, introduction of new drugs Closure of mental health asylums, change in social attitudes 1983 Mental Health Act (now 2007) – rights of people admitted to hospitals on the grounds of mental health

15 Care in the community Success?
Closure of Victorian asylums should = reduced spending for mental health authorities Assumed such ‘extra’ money would be invested in appropriate services for care in the community Political issues

16 Mental health professionals
An individual who offers services for the purpose of improving an individual’s mental health or to treat mental illness Includes; psychiatrists, clinical psychologists, clinical social workers, psychiatric nurses, mental health counselors etc. Deal with the same illnesses, conditions, issues etc. But, scope of practice varies and laws regarding education/training Diagnosis

17 Challenges to mental health treatment
Stigma = the beliefs and attitudes held by a society that are ascribed to groups considered to deviate from the ‘norm’ in some way e.g. the mentally ill. Has four characteristics A label is applied to a group of people The label is linked to deviant or undesirable attribute by society People with the label are viewed differently People with the label are discriminated against

18 Challenges to mental health treatment
Stigma Results in discrimination One of the biggest obstacles to future progress in the diagnosis of mental health disorders We need to set aside our own preconceptions and misgivings Individuals, professionals, media

19 Summary Characteristics of abnormal behaviour – personal distress, disability, violation of social norms, dysfunction. Diathesis stress model Biopsychosocial model Today’s treatment of mental health issues Mental health professionals Obstacles – stigma and discrimination.

Download ppt "PS1000: Introduction to Abnormal Psychology"

Similar presentations

Ads by Google