Key Terms: Abnormal Psychology
What are Psychological Disorders?
- Abnormal behavior: Maladaptive actions or cognitive processes that defy social norms.
- Deinstitutionalization: Late twentieth-century movement to release large numbers of asylum patients and reintegrate them into their communities.
- Medical model: Maintains that abnormal behaviors are symptoms of an underlying disease.
- Psychoanalytic model: Maintains that abnormal behaviors are caused by repressed memories of childhood trauma and unconscious conflicts.
- Humanistic model: Views psychological disorders as temporary impediments to self-actualization that result from unsatisfied needs.
- Cognitive model: Maintains that abnormal behaviors result from faulty beliefs and maladaptive emotional responses.
- Biological model: Maintains that psychological disorders result from imbalances in brain chemistry and other biological causes, including heredity and evolution.
- Sociocultural model: Maintains that psychological disorders are culturally specific and caused by a variety of social and cultural factors.
- Behavioral model: Maintains that abnormal behaviors are the products of learning, just like any other behaviors.
- Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM): The diagnostic tool published by the American Psychiatric Association, used to categorize and diagnose psychological disorders.
- Anxiety disorders: Disorders characterized by excessive fear and anxiety.
- Fear: An emotional response to a real or perceived threat that activates the sympathetic nervous system.
- Anxiety: The expectation of a threat, which results in hypervigilance, evasive behaviors, and bodily tension.
- Generalized anxiety disorder: A disorder characterized by excessive worry about numerous aspects of life.
- Specific phobias: Irrational and excessive fears of particular stimuli, such as heights (acrophobia), spiders (arachnophobia), or crowds (agoraphobia).
- Panic disorder: A disorder characterized by repeat, unexpected panic attacks.
- Panic attacks: Episodes of acute fear that involve intense autonomic arousal.
- Social anxiety disorder: A disorder characterized by anxiety in response to social or performance situations.
- Dissociative disorders: Disorders characterized by a disconnection from one’s identity.
- Depersonalization/derealization disorder: A disorder characterized by feelings of detachment from oneself and/or one’s environment.
- Dissociative amnesia: A disorder characterized by extensive gaps in memory that result from emotional, rather than physiological, trauma.
- Dissociative fugue: A subtype of dissociative amnesia in which patients construct new identities and personal histories for themselves.
- Dissociative identity disorder (DID): A disorder characterized by the presence of two or more distinct personalities that alternate in their control of a patient’s behavior; formerly known as multiple personality disorder.
- Feeding and eating disorders: Disorders characterized by obsessive and unhealthy eating habits.
- Anorexia nervosa: A disorder characterized by a strong desire to lose weight, a low BMI, and habitually restrictive eating.
- Bulimia nervosa: A disorder characterized by bingeing and purging behavior and a normal BMI.