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Abnormal Psychology

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Lauren Franklin

Abnormal Psychology

Week Three- Essay Exam

January 26, 2013

  • 1.)   Historical vs. Contemporary Views of Abnormal Behavior

Abnormal behavior can be well-defined as a behavior that is troubling socially and is intolerable, upsetting, maladaptive or self-defeating, and sometimes the outcome of inaccurate views and understandings.  Historical views of abnormal behavior were very diverse and different from the contemporary views of today.

Historical views included demonology, Gods, and magical spells.  Abnormal behavior was attributed to "possession".  For example, segregated moral vs. immoral spirits, spiritual significance of control, and treatment for demonic control was exorcism.  Exorcism was a spiritually stimulated treatment process intended to force out evil spirits or powers from an "obsessed" individual (103lec2).  The ministers implicated the person of exorcist and numerous ministers spoke of humane care.  Several of the initial philosophical and medical theories originated with Hippocrates (400 BC).  Hippocrates was a Greek physician who lived four hundred years prior to the Common Era. Hippocrates initially offered the perspective that gave basis to what in contemporary perspective is recognized as abnormal psychology.  The concepts that were believed and practiced in regards to the biological makeup of inequality in humors, was thought to be impacted by bodily fluid (103lec2).  Bodily fluids were believed to be affected by the environmental issues of climate and nutrition.   The imbalance bodily fluids were the stimuli to behavior that deviated from normal behavior and served as evidence to what has become known as abnormal psychology.  While Hippocrates believed relationships among behavior and environment were connected to circumstances of mental disorders, he did not put forth at any time a valid viewpoint on an individual with mental health disorders.  Hippocrates believed that individuals influenced by mental health disorders, like most other disorders of health, demanded treatment to be accomplished with self-respect, admiration, and not as individuals of doubtful value or character.  Mental illnesses like other illnesses were owed to natural causes, not evil curses or punishment from the gods.  There were various classifications of mental illnesses for example, Mania, Melancholia, and Phrenitis (103lec2).  Every treatment was dictated by the classifications.  Plato and Aristotle were significant philosophers, as one would look back into history.  Plato investigated illegal deeds committed by persons with abnormal behavior and advised humane treatment. However, he spoke in error as a respected philosopher.  Plato thought that behavior was inspired by essential needs.  Aristotle, who followed Plato and Hippocrates, defined matters of awareness as individuals eluding pain and pursuing their desires.   Later Greek and Romans physicians and philosophers followed the work of the Greek doctor Galen who examined the anatomy and nervous systems of animals.  Later, Roman philosophers and physicians performed post-mortems and made probable connections to humans.  In the middle Ages the Islamic countries continued the practices of Greek medicine.  European's became spiritual and irrational because mental illnesses were widespread at this time and wickedness was viewed as an alternative cause for unusual behavior.  There was mass madness in which the prevalent incidence of group behavior illnesses was actually cases of hysteria (103lec2).

Contemporary views on abnormal behavior have changed and altered over the past centuries.  After looking at it from the biological perspective the nervous system such as the cerebral cortex of an individual is able to estimate the biological perspectives on abnormal behavior (Friedman,, Helen D).  The psychological perspective are the psychodynamic models. For example, the structure of the mind , the structure of personality, defense mechanisms, stages of psychosexual development, other psychodynamic theories, psychodynamic views on normality or abnormality, and evaluating psychodynamic perspectives.  There are numerous learning models such as, role of classical conditioning, role of operant conditioning, social-cognitive theory, and evaluating learning models (Friedman,, Helen D).  There are a couple of humanistic models, for example, humanistic perceptions of abnormal behavior and assessing humanistic representations.  There are four cognitive models known as, information-processing models, Albert Ellis, Aaron Beck, and evaluating cognitive models.  There are a couple of sociocultural viewpoints, which contain ethnicity and mental health, and assessing the sociocultural viewpoints.  Lastly the bio psychosocial perspective comprises of the diathesis-stress model, and assessing the bio psychosocial model (Friedman,, Helen D).

  • 2.)   Do we have causes? What is the current belief on why one ends with a disorder?

The reasons of abnormal behavior are intricate and complex, and it is very difficult to separate and prioritize the numerous issues involved.  One must consider the importance of genetic evidence, perceptual contemplations, social practices and life’s familiar stresses.  Also, the significant absence or presence of proven care resulting in self-worth is among the many factors motivating the psycho-social situation of all individuals.   Other ethnic and environmental factors influence in the situation of a person’s unique psycho social progress and upkeep (Gupta, Nira).

Offspring who have a nervous disorder or developing illness can become stressed because of their inability to gain skills as quickly as their vigorous siblings.  The improved survival rate of preterm babies has inflated the danger for developing illnesses.  A child who cannot complete their work at school or has a physical issue requires additional care to develop life’s basic skills. Even with dignified care, it may be upsetting to a child to realize that they simply cannot maintain the same progress as their friends (Gupta, Nira).  Other medical issues can arise throughout childhood. Chronic diseases such as diabetes type I necessitate the child to take prescriptions daily.  Children occasionally have hard feelings about this stigma and can rebel by misbehaving to demonstrate that they are not sick and are just like everyone else (Gupta, Nira).

Mental health conditions or illnesses can be derived from several impacts that produce diverse results on individuals.  People who are familiar with physical or emotional disturbances that touch individuals in different ways often learn their rescue is assisted by social devoutness and simple philosophies.  Mishaps resulting in traumatic head injuries have exponential likelihoods for ensuing mental health illnesses or incidents of abnormal psychology.  The onset of rapid mental health conditions or illnesses may be the individuals awarding issues ensuing in analysis must be vigorously involved as much as their level of task will authorize their individual treatment and recovery.  This association and connection improves the likelihood for a positive result in the undertaking for therapeutic period (Gupta, Nira).

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