mental disorders: how much is too much?

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The thing that I am really going to remember from psychology (partially because I'm reading other books that also make this point) is that it's really hard to tell how far is too far, especially with mental disorders. All mental disorders are on a spectrum, and it's so hard to define where the line for the mental disorder is. That is, it's hard to tell what's "normal" and what's a disorder. I'm going to remember this primarily because a lot of my maternal side of the family has been diagnosed with one mental disorder or another. I have been diagnosed with several different things over the years, and those diagnoses have often been changed by the next mental health professional I went to. Even with the DSM-IV, it's still hard to determine the borderline cases and whether they have the disorder or not. This is so crucial to the patient because it can mean entirely different treatments are available or that the patient can get assistance with dealing with their symptoms only if they are diagnosed the "right" diagnosis. If someone is diagnosed with depression, they won't be able to get as much help as if they are diagnosed with bipolar disorder, even if they have the same symptoms. I find this frustrating, because we should really be looking at whether the person needs help, not whether their diagnosis needs help. dsm_iv.jpg

7 Comments

You bring up some good points that I hadn't thought of before. I think that often times people just think that if one doctor thinks something then that means all the doctors in the area think the same thing when that might not actually be true. I guess that's why some people continue going to different mental health experts in some cases because they feel like they aren't getting the right diagnosis. In some cases it might be hard too because the disorder might change over time to some degree making it harder to diagnose.

You have a lot of very good and interesting points here, I was wondering how the internet might work into play with this too. Now a days it is very easy to go on the internet and look up your symptoms and diagnose yourself. I wonder if people don't like their diagnoses because they go home after their appointment and look up all of the extreme cases and say that they don't fit that disorder, when in reality they fit it perfectly, they just don't have the same symptoms as other people.

This entry really made me think. I think that with all the knowledge on this subject, it can be dangerous sometimes. I feel like you can turn anywhere and see something about disorders, some symptoms and feel like thats you. I think it is hard because people can change, or not want to have that disorder, and in some cases, I feel like certain disorders can even make you believe you don't have it. They really are tricky to diagnosis and treat, and you brought up a really great point with this entry!

Your blog is really interesting. I agree with everyone that with references such as the internet, it's really easy to diagnose yourself with a mental disorder. I also feel like a lot of the symptoms may just be everyday things that occur in someone's life. Sometimes, people become paranoid that they may really have a mental disorder and suddenly they believe that they have every symptom listed. Take pregnancy symptoms for example (I know this has NOTHING to do with mental disorders). One of the most well known pregnancy symptoms, aside from a missed period, is morning sickness. Knowing this, someone who believes they may be pregnant may think, "Well, I sort of did feel sick the other morning..." This sort of goes hand-in-hand with mental disorders. All in all, this blog was well written. Good job! :)

You have really good points,mental problem is a very serious problem and you can not just ignore them. However, with the developing of the technology, mental problem is more easy to solve.

Good point. It is really hard to say what is "normal" or not with mental illnesses or even in perfectly healthy people! Every one has their own specific needs and I believe we need to cater to them with a more nurturing process. What may be severe for one person, may be significantly less for the next. It would be nice if there was a generalized scale for people suffering with mental illnesses so professionals can assess the situation properly and prescribe the right medications if needed, but in all honesty, it will never happen. We all like to capitalize on being unique and individuals, so I think we should be treated as so.

I think when there is a touchy subject like mental disorders it is very difficult to assign people to having one. It is extremely difficult for the parents or loved ones to hear. The idea of where the cutoffs for each mental disorder should be I think are specific to every person and every case making it hard to diagnose people with the gravity of what they really have.

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This page contains a single entry by phil0836 published on April 28, 2012 8:11 AM.

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