1. Describe the maladaptive traits someone scoring high or low on the neuroticism factor might experience.
People scoring high or low on the neuroticism factor exhibit wide range of behaviors. Individuals with high scores on the neuroticism factor have a higher likelihood of being temperamental. They also feel such anxious, concern, fear, aggression, frustration, covetousness, guilt, and depression. Conversely, people who score low in the test have a tendency of being emotionally secure and less responsive to stress. They are very composed, imperturbable, and have a lesser likelihood of being tense or upset.
2. DSM-5 describes personality disorders in terms of discrete categories. Discuss the limitations of this approach.
Categorizing personality disorders into specific groups runs the risk of missing out on a large number of conditions that are yet to be defined. Such an approach is limited because mental conditions are typically caused by a combination of different factors. The occurrence of a melting pot of sorts forms new conditions that cannot be easily diagnosed or categorized. An excellent situation is when someone suffering from schizophrenia also suffers from dementia. The outcome of these two conditions is definitely unique and far more complicated.
3. Discuss the importance of understanding a patient’s culture when making a diagnostic decision.
Culture plays a major role in determining the success rates of the proposed therapies. The culture is a major part of the individual. Therefore, specific aspects such as norms, traditions, and beliefs are practiced dutifully to an extent that they supersede modern medicine. Culture also determines the acceptable form of treatment for different genders and ages in the community. Failure to observe these cultural requirements will result in a resistance to the proposed therapy.
4. Explain how genetic factors, family processes, and the social environment interact in the etiology of antisocial behavior.
Anti –social behavior refers to a group of practices that show complete disregard for the welfare of other people in the vicinity. This type of behavior covers any actions that infringes on the rights of other people or that which disrupts the peace in society (Oltmanns, and Emery 35). The exact cause of anti-social behavior among human beings cannot be summarized to a single factor. The study of behavioral genetics has generated significant results that point towards the possibility that human beings can inherit certain traits that predispose them towards criminal behavior. These traits include impulsivity, rapid arousal, and attention disorders as well as other conditions.
The role of family processes in determining the manifestation of anti-social behaviors cannot be undermined as well. Family processes include but are not limited to maternal approaches, discipline styles, and parental competency (Oltmanns, and Emery 48). The family structure will determine the quality of parenting. For instance, single parents are forced to assume the role of both the mother and father. This places a great strain on their existing nurturing resources. Children from such families have a higher likelihood of being socially incompetent.
The social environment exposed people to different tendencies and practices that eventually shape their attitudes and behavior. People spend a large part of their life in school, work and at home. The nature of the environment will either reinforce or discourage certain tendencies (Oltmanns, and Emery 77). For instance, growing up in a war zone will de-sensitize children on violence. Conversely, they will grow up understanding that all conflicts are resolved using coercion. In conclusion, the combination of these three major and other lesser factors contributes towards an individual’s tendency to exhibit anti-social behavior.
5. Discuss the defining characteristics of anorexia.
Anorexia or anorexia nervosa is a common eating disorder that is linked to self-deprivation of food. The condition is very dangerous and has a high possibility of leading to mortality. Anorexia is normally classified as a social and medical condition because of the trigger factors and physical manifestations respectively. Anorexia is most common among teenagers, young adults, and individuals in specific careers such as modeling and sports. Various official documentation and literature including Oltmanns and Emery (2015) have captured the major characteristics of this eating disorder. The most common characteristic is food restriction. This is where the patient deliberately eats less than what the body requires with the intention of reducing their body weight (Oltmanns, and Emery 283). In the long term, food deprivation lowers the overall weight. The deprivation is caused by an intense phobia of gaining additional weight or becoming obese. This fear pushes the patient to avoid all forms of foods that have a high calorie or fat content regardless of the fact that they might already be underweight. Apart from the fear of becoming fat, poor self esteem and perception is another major characteristic of anorexia nervosa (Oltmanns, and Emery 287). People suffering from this condition see themselves as having an unattractive body shape. They may perceive a part of their body as imperfect and therefore, strive to change it by depriving themselves of regular meals. They may also fail to perceive their current unhealthy situation.
6. What patterns in the epidemiology of eating disorders suggest sociocultural influences on their development?
Socio-cultural influences can be defined as the environmental elements that contribute towards society’s perception of body image and dietary choices. These messages are distributed across public platforms including the media (Oltmanns, and Emery 291). In the western culture, there is a trend that displays pathological behavior in which people pursue the perfect body. The petite ideal has pushed many Americans and Europeans to seek the perfect thin body as a symbol of beauty. Therefore, a person’s self-esteem is pegged on her perceived attractiveness which in turn in is determined by weight and form. Within the same societies, weight stigma has evolved out of the pursuit of the perfect shape (Oltmanns, and Emery 2292). Conversely, full bodies and obese people are bullied and stigmatized because of their inability to embrace the ideal body type. This phenomenon is also a key factor that predisposes overweight people towards eating disorders such as anorexia nervosa. The emergence of weight-shaming and other practices has pressured many people to make drastic diet changes that encourage anorexia. At the national level, the rapid rate of acculturation into the Western lifestyle has also pressured many foreigners to adopt risky eating habits. This pressure occurs subtly through socialization agents such as the media, peers, schools and the family unit.
7. Describe the research on the effectiveness of different forms of therapy for treating bulimia nervosa.
Bulimia nervosa is a common eating condition in which affected people overeat and then deliberately purge. Most therapies for bulimia are inclusive in nature. They combine medical and therapeutic approaches. Cognitive therapies for bulimia focused on changing the patient’s perception of their bodies and self esteem. This approach was effective but it involved secluding the subject from external interference (Bernacchi 23). The family approach was largely ineffective mainly because many of the family members were also struggling with similar self-perception problems. The support therapy was highly effective for several reasons. One, the therapy was moderated by a professional counselor who was trained to handle such disorders. Two, in such therapies, the beneficiaries were exposed to a constructive environment that allowed them to thrive (Bernacchi 67). The least effective strategy was self-help manuals. While they offered valuable information on the disorder, they were largely unable to initiate a change in perceptions.
8. What are the symptoms and causes of withdrawal? Which drugs cause serious signs of withdrawal?
Withdrawal happens because the
brain is denied access to different drugs that alter its normal
functioning. Drugs have the effect of suppress the release of neurotransmitters
and when these drugs are eliminated from the system, the brain reacts by producing
different chemicals that trigger withdrawal symptoms. These unpleasant feelings
are an attempt by the body to adjust and compensate for the lack of a certain
element in the body. It is an attempt to restore stability in the body organs
through homeostasis (Keski-Rahkonen, and Mustelin 56).Withdrawal symptoms are emotional, physical and mental. Physically, the affected person exhibits
profuse sweating even in cold weather, dizziness, tightness in the chest and short
breaths. Their heartbeat normally increases or becomes erratic. Lastly, addicts
on withdrawal exhibit muscle twitches. Mentally and emotionally, patients
undergoing withdrawal exhibit anxiety and panic attacks. They are also
bad-tempered and restless. Addicts trying to withdraw from drugs may exhibit
signs of depression and low appetite. They may also exhibit insomnia and poor
concentration at work or at homes. Alcohol and tranquilizers are responsible
for the most severe manifestations of withdrawal symptoms (Keski-Rahkonen, and
Mustelin 127). Attending to stop abuse of alcohol or tranquilizers drastically
will lead to panic attacks, strokes, and heart attacks in among highly addicted
patients. Other dangerous withdrawal symptoms include hallucinations and
delirium tremens (DTS).
Bernacchi, Dana Lynn. “Bulimia Nervosa: A Comprehensive Analysis of Treatment, Policy, and Social Work Ethics.” Social Work, vol. 62, no.2, 2017, pp. 174-180.
Keski-Rahkonen, Anna, and Linda Mustelin. “Epidemiology of Eating Disorders in Europe: Prevalence, Incidence, Comorbidity, Course, Consequences, and Risk Factors.” Current Opinion in Psychiatry, vol. 29, no. 6, 2016, pp. 340-345.
Oltmanns, Thomas F., and Robert E. Emery. Abnormal Psychology. Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson, 2015.