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Abnormal Psychology Lecture 1

by: Kennedy Finister

Abnormal Psychology Lecture 1 PSYC 3560

Marketplace > Auburn University > Psychlogy > PSYC 3560 > Abnormal Psychology Lecture 1
Kennedy Finister
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About this Document

intro to abnormal psychology --> what does it mean to be abnormal --> 3 elements of abnormality -->stigma vs stereotypes
Abnormal Psychology
Dr. Fix
Class Notes
Psychology, abnormal psych, Abnormal psychology, Auburn University, psyc3560, Lecture Notes




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This 4 page Class Notes was uploaded by Kennedy Finister on Thursday May 19, 2016. The Class Notes belongs to PSYC 3560 at Auburn University taught by Dr. Fix in Spring 2016. Since its upload, it has received 21 views. For similar materials see Abnormal Psychology in Psychlogy at Auburn University.


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Date Created: 05/19/16
Introduction To Abnormal Psychology May 19, 2016 LECTURE 1 Defining Abnormal Behavior • Elements of Abnormality o 3 D’s § Deviant Behavior • Deviancy • Violation of societal standards/norms § Psychological Distress • Suffering • Social discomfort towards them/surrounding § Debilitating • Maladaptiveness • Irrationality or unpredictability o No single element can diagnose health issue Deviant • Statistically rare/uncommon • Not at all deviant behavior causes issues • Deviance is often present but cannot be the sole factor • People can be deviant in many ways but not always bad • Violation of Societal Standards o What is normal & abnormal is culturally relative § Ex) Saudi Arabian women aren’t allowed to drive but women in the United States are allowed to and drive as much as men § Ex) Colorado is okay with people smoking marijuana, they promote it. If you travel down to the south or most other states its very much illegal and frowned upon. o Most exist cross-culturally (But prominent features may differ) Distress • Suffering o Does behavior cause distress for a person? § Cant focus, affecting relationships, etc o Everyone experiences distress from time to time but that doesn’t mean they have a mental health issue § Loss of loved one Introduction To Abnormal Psychology May 19, 2016 • Social Discomfort o Does behavior impact others? Uncomfortable to interact with them? § Ex) Bipolar Disorder à in a manic episode they may be hypersexual or spending an unusual amount of money, money they don’t have Debilitating • Holding someone back or preventing them from being productive • Maladaptiveness o Does behavior lead to some type of impairment or interfere with one’s life? § Ex) substance use § Ex) Social Phobia à refuse to leave the house but one day of the year limiting social life/relationships • Irrationality or unpredictability o Ex) bipolar disorders à impulse behavior, endangering others Diagnostic & Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) • Has existed since 1952 with several revisions o Some disorders are very culturally bound § Ex) Eating disorders in western societies o Ex) Being Gay or Lesbian used to be considered a mental health disorder now we’ve evolved and started to slowly accept the notion of homosexuals • Current Editions: DSM-5 (just released in may 2013) • Syndromes/disorders • Groups disorders by categories • Checklist of observable symptoms What Is DSM-5? • 5 edition of Diagnostic & Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders o Used to classify disorder o Often guides treatment, provides codes for insurance companies o Can be used to guide research o Classification comes with its own problems Defining Abnormal • DSM-5 definition o Clinically significant syndrome Introduction To Abnormal Psychology May 19, 2016 o Distress or disability (impaired functioning) o Not culturally sanctioned o Considered to reflect behavioral, psychological, or biological dysfunction • Symptoms alone are not enough Issues in classifications • Gender differences o Ex) when women get sad they cry, when men get sad they get angry • Race/ethnicity o Ex) doctors may make assumptions about African Americans when they come in for treatment (their skin is thicker, have a higher pain tolerance, etc) may give them less pain killers or reflect their recovery plan in some way. • Why Classify? o Provides a nomenclature for structuring information o Facilitates communication o Facilitates research § But can also impede research that is “outside of the box” o Practical reasons (resource allocation, insurance) • Disadvantages of classification o Stigmatization § Stereotyping/labeling • Lead to people feeling embarrassed, less likely to get help § Loss of information § Diagnostic categories are heterogeneous • Presenting in several different ways Stigma & Stereotyping • Stigma o Mark of disgrace, mark of characteristic of a defect • Stereotype o Automatic simplified & standardized conception of a group o To believe infantry that all people of things with a particular characteristic are the same o Very tribal thinking § Who is an enemy/threat, compartmentalize Introduction To Abnormal Psychology May 19, 2016 Myths of Mental Health Problems • Mental health problems are caused by bad parenting o FACT: most diagnosed individuals come from supportive homes • People with mental health problems are violent and dangerous o FACT: Most are victims of violence • People with a mental health problems are not smart o FACT: Numerous studies have shown that many individuals with mental health problems have average or above average intelligence


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