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Terms in this set (40)
deviant, distressful, and dysfunctional patterns of thoughts, feelings, or behaviors
medical model of mental illness
The assumption that mental illness results from such biological causes as brain damage, impaired neural transmissions, or biochemical abnormalities.
major depressive disorder and schizophrenia
occur world wide
the study of environmental influences on gene expression that occur without a DNA change
the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition; a widely used system for classifying psychological disorders.
Most popular mental illness diagnosis in the US
Depressive disorders or bipolar disorder
Proactive factors for mental disorders
Aerobic exercise, literacy and social support
Risk factors for mental disorders
Chronic pain, academic failure and low socioeconomic status
A class of disorders marked by feelings of excessive apprehension and anxiety.
generalized anxiety disorder
an anxiety disorder in which a person is continually tense, apprehensive, and in a state of autonomic nervous system arousal
An anxiety disorder marked by unpredictable minutes-long episodes of intense dread in which a person experiences terror and accompanying chest pain, choking, or other frightening sensations.
irrational fears of specific objects or situations
obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD)
an anxiety disorder characterized by unwanted repetitive thoughts (obsessions) and/or actions (compulsions)
post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
an anxiety disorder characterized by haunting memories, nightmares, social withdrawal, jumpy anxiety, and/or insomnia that lingers for four weeks or more after a traumatic experience
-Excessive attention and alertness that guards against potential danger
Correlational (Twin Study) Research looking at genetics and the development of PTSD in Vietnam Vets.
A: investigate PTSD's affect on development
P: looked at mental health of kids of Holocaust survivors
R: the children of Holocaust survivors were more likely to develop PTSD
Sack et al (1995)
Genetics study that found that Cambodian refugee children whose parents both had PTSD were five times more likely to receive the diagnosis than refugee children whose parents did not have PTSD.
Found in the amygdala and responsible for memory formation when stimulated by adrenaline.
Dominique de Quervain (2012)
Examined if having genetic mutation in your a2b-adrenoceptor would assist in recall of emotional memories. In his experiment, he showed students photographs of positive scenes such as families playing together, negative scenes such as car accidents, and neutral ones, such as people on the phone. Those students with at least one gene for the rarer version of the protein were twice as good at remembering details of emotionally charged scenes than were those with only the common version.
Kolassa et al (2010)
Recorded how often people in a Rwandan refugee camp suffered flashbacks and nightmares about their wartime experiences. They also did blood testing to determine the version of the α2b-adrenoceptor genes in each of their volunteers. As predicted, those with the mutation of the gene had significantly more flashbacks than those with only the common version of the gene.
a hormone produced by the adrenal glands that has a stimulatory effect on the nervous system
Geracioti et al (2001)
Study that found PTSD patients had higher levels of noradrenaline than average. In addition, stimulating the adrenal system in PTSD patients induced a panic attack in 70% of patients, and flashbacks in 40% of patients.
Morgan et al (2000)
Carried out a study of healthy US Army soldiers who participated in a survival course designed to simulate the conditions endured by prisoners of war, such as food and sleep deprivation, isolation and intense interrogations. Baseline levels of NPY were taken before the training and then the levels were measured after the training. The researchers found that NPY levels went up in the soldiers' blood within hours of the interrogations. Those soldiers who responded more negatively to the training experience were those with lower levels of NPY.
Yehuda et al (2006)
Carried out a study that looked at soldiers exposed to combat that did not develop PTSD and soldiers exposed to combat who did develop PTSD. It was found that those that had PTSD had lower levels of NPY.
research in which the same people are restudied and retested over a long period
Strengths of biological etiologies in developing PTSD
Twin studies have been highly reliable in their findings.
There is animal research to support the theories.
Large sample sizes have been used to make the findings more generalizable.
Limitations of biological etiologies in developing PTSD
Correlational research means that causation cannot be established and bidirectional ambiguity cannot be resolved.
In cases of PTSD, it is difficult to find twins who have experienced the same level of trauma. For example, although both twins may have been in the Vietnam War, they had different experiences. In the case of the death of a parent, one twin may have been more attached to the parent than the other.
The arguments are reductionist in nature and do not account for the variations in the symptomology of PTSD. For example, why was "Shell Shock" the common form of PTSD after World War I? Why do we not see these symptoms today?
More prospective studies need to be carried out to support the theories.
early maladaptive schema model
States that schema formed early in life as a result of negative childhood experiences affect how we process negative life events.
Cockram et al (2010)
Examined the role of early maladaptive schemas in the development of PTSD in 220 Australian and New Zealand Vietnam War veterans. Veterans diagnosed with PTSD scored higher on the Young Schema Questionnaire than veterans not diagnosed with PTSD - that is, they reported more negative childhood experiences with parents and in early childhood.
locus of control
A belief about the amount of control a person has over situations in their life, can be internal or external.
Bolstad and Zinbarg (1997)
Found that participants who had experienced repeated or multiple cases of sexual abuse had a lower perception of control - or an external locus of control. This was also associated with greater PTSD symptoms after having been victimized as an adult.
Ratzer et al (2014)
In this study, fifty-two patients who were admitted to an Intensive Care Unit following a traumatic injury were followed for six months. They were given tests to measure both the level of PTSD and their locus of control. The findings showed that 19.2% of the patients developed PTSD symptoms over the six months.
Strengths of cognitive etiologies of PTSD
Therapy based on cognitive restructuring is effective for many patients with PTSD.
Cognitive theories help to explain differences in symptoms.
Limitations of cognitive etiologies of PTSD
Cognitive research is highly reliant on self-reported data which is open to memory distortion and cannot always be verified for accuracy.
The Aetiology-Treatment Fallacy argues that just because a treatment may be successful, it does not mean that schema are the actual cause of the disorder.
Cognition cannot be directly observed.
It can be argued that cognitive arguments are an overly simplistic explanation of the disorder.
A biopsychosocial explanation of PTSD which proposes that genetic, prenatal, and postnatal biological factors render a person vulnerable to PTSD, but environmental stress determines whether it develops or not.
influences that reduce the impact of early stress and tend to predict positive outcomes
Solomon, Mikulincer & Avitzur (1988)
Examined the relationship between PTSD symptoms and social support in 262 Israeli soldiers three years after their combat experience. Higher levels of social support were correlated with lower levels of PTSD. Increases in social support were correlated with decreases in PTSD over time.
Abu-Ras & Abu-Bader (2009)
The study used focus group interviews and took place after the 9/11 attacks - when it was believed that this type of national trauma would revive memories of previous trauma. In addition to suffering from a much higher level of discrimination than other groups, many Arab refugees move to areas of the US where they do not have a support system. This becomes a risk factor for PTSD. The findings showed that immigrants who had a support network were less at risk for PTSD.
Coan, Schaefer & Davidson's (2006)
Attempted to look at the way that environmental protective factors affect physiology. In their study 16 married women were threatened with an electric shock while holding their husband's hand, the hand of an anonymous male experimenter or no hand at all while they were in an fMRI brain imaging scanner. While in the fMRI the women were shown 12 non-threat indicating images (safety cues) and 12 threatening images (threat cues) - that is, images that when shown, indicated that an electrical shock was possible. The cue triggers sensory arousal and activates brain regions associated with fear and anxiety. Results showed that the brain's "threat response" was lowest when holding their husband's hand a strongest when no hand was held.
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