Mental Illness Paper HCA/240 Brian Eigelbach 09/07/12 Mental Illness Paper Schizophrenia is a very serious disease. This disease is a psychotic disorder characterized by loss of the ability to function in everyday life. Some people feel delusional; have hallucinations, and disintegration of personality. The disease was first identified as a discrete mental illness by Dr. Emile Kraepelin in the 1887 and the illness itself is generally believed to have accompanied mankind through its history (Schizophrenia.com, 2010). The name schizophrenia comes from the Greek word “schizo-phrene”.
HCA 240 A Brief History of Schizophrenia The history of schizophrenia, like the history of many mental disorders, has been a tragic tale. Swiss psychiatrist Paul Eugen Bleuler first identified and named the disease schizophrenia in 1910 (Burton, 2012). Since that time, the disease has undergone many changes in understanding. Some of the early views of the disease included Freud’s view that it resulted from unconscious conflicts from childhood. Other views led to a myriad of ineffective treatments that were often torturous to the patients including: fever therapy, sleep therapy, gas therapy, electroconvulsive or electroshock treatment, and prefrontal leucotomy (Burton, 2012).
Schizophrenia Through the works of Hollywood and the media, schizophrenia has been blown out of portion and forever over-dramatized. Schizophrenia, commonly confused with Dissociative Identity Disorder, is a severe mental disorder characterized by disturbances in thinking, language, emotion, and relationships (Lilienfeld, 2011). According to the National Institute of Mental Health, approximately one percent of Americans have a diagnosis of schizophrenia (as cited in Richard & Brahm, 2012). Research has shown men and women are equally at risk for this disease, as well as there is no proof of difference between races and cultures. When people hear the term schizophrenia, “insane” and “delirious” may come to mind.
PARANOID SCHIZOPHRENIA Paranoid Schizophrenia is a chronic mental illness in which reality is distorted, also known as psychosis; people with Paranoid Schizophrenia cannot tell what is real from what is imagined. Paranoid Schizophrenia is one of the most common diagnosed forms of Schizophrenia; it only affects 1% of the general population, about 2.2 million people. People diagnosed with schizophrenia make up about half of all patients in psychiatric hospitals and may occupy as many as one quarter of the world's hospital beds. People with schizophrenia have problems remembering, paying attention, and communication .Some researchers believe Paranoid Schizophrenia develops as a young child, but major symptoms do not affect the mind fully until
(Mayo Clinic Staff, 2010) As mentioned on the Mayo Clinic website (2013) people with anti-social personality disorder often ignore the wishes and feelings of others. They tend to treat people harshly, and often are manipulative and antagonistic. The exact cause of this lifelong disorder is unknown; however it is believed to be a cause of a combination of genetics and environment, and that there may even be a link between the disorder and an early onset of lack of empathy. This essay has been taken from an online site, and is not the original work of the author. The symptoms usually present in childhood, and are fully manifested for most during the 20s and 30s.
A Case Study of Schizophrenia in “A Beautiful Mind” Movies in popular culture often attempt to characterize psychological problems, such as the four time academy winning film, “A Beautiful Mind.” Russell Crowe stars as the brilliant mathematician John Nash who succumbs to the deteriorating mental disorder schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is a brain disease characterized by impairments in the perception of reality, most commonly manifesting auditory or visual hallucinations, disorganized speech/thinking and paranoid delusions as in the case of John Nash. There are many causal factors that can lead to schizophrenia, including environmental and genetic factors (J.A. Dyce, personal communication, March, 2009). In terms of Axis I disorders, Schizophrenia is the fourth most common with a lifetime prevalence of 1 – 1.5%.
This mental disorder makes it difficult to differentiate between what is reality and what is fantasy. The symptoms of schizophrenia are divided into positive and negative symptoms. An individual must display at least two positive symptoms or one positive symptom as well as a negative symptom. Positive symptoms are symptoms that are only present in people with schizophrenia and atypical to the average person, such as hallucinations. Negative symptoms include deficits of standard emotional responses, such as lack of motivation or inability to experience pleasure.
While depression is often referred to by mental health professionals as the “common cold” of mental illness, schizophrenia is considered the “cancer”. This is because it is probably the most serious and debilitating psychiatric disorder that exists. Just over one out of every 100 people aged 18 or older has schizophrenia in the U.S. That’s nearly two and a half million Americans. Unlike depression and anxiety, which sometimes occur only during a short period of a person’s life, schizophrenia is a lifelong disorder. And at this time, there is no known cure.
(APA, 2000) People with this disorder have an increased risk of suicide and physical illness. Many studies regarding socioeconomic paradigms have shown that the poor classes are more likely to suffer from schizophrenia than the wealthy class; this idea is called the downward drift theory. There are three phases when schizophrenia is unmistakable are called: prodromal, active, and residual. The leading stage would be the prodromal stage, where individuals slowly start to mentally deteriorate; they develop strange ideas and speak, express their ideas in an atypical way. The second phase would be the active stage, symptoms become apparent; often elicited by a loss or a tragically event in their lives.
Origins of Abnormal Psychology The deinstitutionalization movement began in the 1960s where the number of psychiatric hospitals radically decreased and conditions for patients improved drastically (Hansell & Damour, 2008). “The blunt realities of mental illness shatter our most deeply held convictions about the nature of human consciousness and behavior. The mentally ill are more different than us than we can imagine and more like us than we care to admit” (Bosco, p. 131). Past methods of treatment used to help the mentally ill has faced a great deal of controversy in society and was clear during this era the methods previously used had negative results on both society and the patients. While in the early stages of the deinstitutionalization the methods were radical and released patients from hospitals most programs were not well thought out or implemented.