A mental disorder, also called mental illness or psychiatric disorder , is a behavioral or mental pattern that causes distress or significant impairment of personal functioning, these characteristics can be persistent, recurrent and remitting, or present as a single episode. Many disorders have been described, with signs and symptoms that vary widely between specific disorders, which can be diagnosed by a mental health professional.
A mental disorder is an aspect of mental health, cultural and religious beliefs, as well as social norms, must be taken into account when making a diagnosis.
Common mental disorders include depression , which affects about 400 million, dementia, which affects about 35 million, and schizophrenia , which affects about 21 million people worldwide. Stigma and discrimination can exacerbate the suffering and disability associated with mental disorders, leading to various social movements trying to increase understanding and challenge social exclusion.
History of mental disorders
References to mental disorders in early Egyptian, Indian, Greek, and Roman scriptures show that physicians and philosophers who contemplated problems of human behavior viewed mental illness as a reflection of discontent with the gods or as evidence of demon possession.
Only a few realized that people with mental illness should be treated humanely rather than exorcised, punished or banished, certain Greek medical writers, however, notably Hippocrates regarded mental disorders as illnesses to be understood in terms of disturbed physiology. He and his followers emphasized natural causes, clinical observation, and brain pathology.
Later, Greek medical writers, including those practicing in imperial Rome, prescribed treatments for mental illnesses, including a calm environment, work, and the use of drugs such as purgative hellebore, it is likely that most people with psychosis during seniority were cared for by their families and that those deemed dangerous to themselves or others were detained at home by relatives or by hired guardians.
During the High Middle Ages in Europe, primitive thinking about mental illness resurfaced, and witchcraft and demonology were invoked to account for the symptoms and behavior of people with psychosis, at least some of those who were considered insane were cared for by religious orders, which offered care to the sick in general. The empirical and quasi-scientific Greek tradition in medicine was not upheld by Europeans, but by Muslim Arabs, who are generally credited with establishing asylums for the mentally ill in the Middle East as early as the 8th century.
From the 17th century onwards in Europe, there was a growing tendency to isolate deviant people, including the mentally ill, from the rest of society. Therefore, the mentally ill were confined along with the disabled, homeless, and criminals. Those deemed violent were often chained to prison walls and treated in a barbaric and inhumane manner.
In the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries, the development of European medicine and the emergence of empirical methods of medical-scientific research were paralleled by an improvement in public attitudes towards the mentally ill. By the end of the 18th century, concern for the care of the mentally ill had become so great among educated people in Europe and North America that governments were forced to act. After the French Revolution, the physician Philippe Pinel was put in charge of the Bicêtre, the hospital for the mentally ill in Paris.
Today’s Mental Disorders
At present, many new psychiatric medications have been introduced and they successfully treat the majority of people with mental illness. Very few people are admitted to psychiatric hospitals for long periods due to lack of funds (mainly private insurance) and because most people can receive successful treatment in the community.
Homelessness and incarceration of the mentally ill remain a major problem, as does the lack of beds and resources to treat people with serious mental illness.
Causes of mental disorders
Some mental illnesses have been linked to abnormal functioning of nerve cell circuits or pathways that connect particular brain regions. Nerve cells within these brain circuits communicate through chemicals called neurotransmitters . “Adjusting” these chemicals, through medications, psychotherapy, or other medical procedures, can help brain circuits work more efficiently. Additionally, defects or injuries in certain areas of the brain have also been linked to some mental conditions.
Some causes include:
Mental illnesses sometimes run in families, suggesting that people who have a family member with a mental illness may be more likely to develop one themselves, susceptibility runs in families through genes. Experts believe that many mental illnesses are related to abnormalities in many genes rather than just one or a few, and that the way these genes interact with the environment is unique to each person (even identical twins).
That is why a person inherits a susceptibility to mental illness and does not necessarily develop the illness. Mental illness itself is caused by the interaction of multiple genes and other factors, such as stress , abuse, or a traumatic event, that can influence or trigger an illness in a person who has an inherited susceptibility.
Certain infections have been linked to brain damage and the development of mental illness or the worsening of its symptoms. For example, a condition known as pediatric autoimmune neuropsychiatric disorder associated with the Streptococcus bacteria has been linked to the development of obsessive-compulsive disorder and other mental illnesses in children.
Brain defects or injuries
Defects or injuries in certain areas of the brain have also been linked to some mental illnesses.
Some evidence suggests that a developmental disturbance or early brain trauma to the fetus that occurs at birth, for example, loss of oxygen to the brain, may be a factor in the development of certain conditions, such as autism . spectrum disorder
Poor nutrition and exposure to toxins, such as lead, can play a role in the development of mental illness.
Mental illness is common, about 1 in 5 adults have a mental illness in a given year, it can start at any age, from childhood to later adult years, but most start earlier in life. The effects can be temporary or long-lasting, you can also have more than one mental health disorder at the same time.
Emotional symptoms of mental disorders
Mental health problems can cause a wide variety of emotional symptoms, some of which include:
- Humor changes.
- Erratic thinking
- Chronic anxiety
- Exaggerated sense of self-worth.
- Impulsive actions.
Treatment of mental disorders
There are a variety of different types of treatment and what is best suited depends on the disorder and the individual, many things have been found to help at least some people, and one effect can play a role in any intervention or medication. In a minority of cases, people may be treated against their will, which can cause particular difficulties depending on how it is performed and perceived.
An important option for many mental disorders is psychotherapy, there are several main types:
- The cognitive behavioral therapy is widely used and is based on the changing patterns of thought and behavior associated with a particular disorder.
- The psychoanalysis , which addresses the underlying psychic conflicts and defenses, has been a dominant school of psychotherapy and is still in use.
- Systemic therapy or family therapy is sometimes used, addressing a network of significant people, as well as an individual.
Some psychotherapies are based on a humanistic approach , there are a number of specific therapies used for particular disorders, which can be derivatives or hybrids of the above types. Mental health professionals often employ an eclectic or integrative approach, much may depend on the therapeutic relationship, and there may be issues with trust, confidentiality, and commitment.
An important option for many mental disorders is psychiatric medication and there are several main groups:
- Antidepressants are used to treat clinical depression, as well as often for anxiety and a variety of other disorders.
- Anxiolytics (including sedatives) are used for anxiety disorders and related problems, such as insomnia.
- Mood stabilizers are used primarily in bipolar disorder.
- Antipsychotics are used for psychotic disorders, especially for positive symptoms in schizophrenia, and increasingly for a variety of other disorders as well.
- Stimulants are commonly used, especially for ADHD.
Despite the different conventional names of the drug groups, there may be considerable overlap in the disorders for which they are actually indicated, and there may also be off-label use of the drugs. There can be problems with medication adverse effects and adherence to them, and there are also criticisms of pharmaceutical marketing and professional conflicts of interest.
- Electroconvulsive therapy is sometimes used in severe cases when other interventions for severe intractable depression have failed.
- Psychosurgery is considered experimental, but some neurologists recommend it in certain rare cases.
- Psychoeducation programs can provide people with the information to understand and manage their problems. Creative therapies are sometimes used, including music therapy, art therapy, or drama therapy, and lifestyle adjustments and supportive measures are often used, including peer support, mental health self-help groups, and supported housing or supported employment (including social enterprises). Some defend dietary supplements.
Reasonable accommodations (adjustments and supports) can be implemented to help an individual cope and succeed in environments despite a possible disability related to mental health issues, this could include an emotional support animal or a psychiatric service dog specifically trained.
Types of mental disorders
Also known as major depressive disorder, clinical depression, and major depression, it is characterized by a persistent feeling of sadness or a lack of interest in external stimuli. Unipolar connotes a difference between major depression and bipolar depression, which refers to a state oscillating between depression and mania. Read the full article on: Clinical Depression.
Sadistic personality disorder
It can be defined as a type of personality disorder in which an affected individual inflicts sadistic, cruel, manipulative, aggressive and denigrating behavior on others. Violence and abuse are the hallmarks of a sadist’s social relationships, such people lack empathy and concern for other people and derive pleasure from hurting or humiliating others. Read the full article on sadistic personality disorder
Sensory processing disorder
Sensory Processing Disorder is a condition in which the brain has trouble receiving and responding to information that enters through the senses. Formerly known as sensory integration dysfunction, a distinct medical diagnosis is currently not recognized.
Some people with sensory processing disorder are overly sensitive to things in their environment, common sounds can be painful or overwhelming, and the light touch of a shirt can irritate the skin. You can read a complete section on: Sensory Processing Disorder
It is a severe form of a syndrome that is mentioned in DSM-IV (APA, 1994) and the American literature as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Hyperactivity or hyperkinesia can be defined as an enduring disposition to behave in a restless,
fashionably distracted, distracted and disorganized manner. Read more about: Hyperkinetic disorder
Specific learning disorder
This developmental disorder involves difficulties in learning and using academic skills, it has become the generic term for math, reading, and writing disorders in the updated DSM-5. Read more about : Specific learning disorder
It is a condition similar to mania but less severe. Symptoms are similar with elevated mood, increased activity, decreased need for sleep, grandiosity, racing thoughts, and the like. However, hypomanic episodes differ in that they do not cause significant distress or impair work, family, or social life in an obvious way whereas manic episodes do.
Hypomanic people tend to be unusually cheerful, have more than enough energy and need little sleep, it is a pleasant state, and it can confer a greater sense of creativity and power. However, it can subtly affect a person’s judgment, too much confidence can hide the consequences of decisions. Read more about : Hypomanic disorder
Comorbidity refers to more than one disorder or disease that exists in conjunction with a primary diagnosis, which is the reason for which a patient is referred and / or treated. Sometimes the additional disorders are psychological, and sometimes they are more purely physiological in nature. There are some diseases and disorders that are more likely than others to be comorbid with each other.
In bipolar disorder, the most common comorbid conditions are anxiety disorders such as: generalized anxiety disorder, panic disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive compulsive disorder, and agoraphobia. Read more about: Comorbid disorder
Depressive anxiety disorder
The mixed anxiety and depression has been controversial and not all existing diagnostic classifications include it , not that its existence is not recognized, but has sometimes been regarded as a depressive disorder with secondary features of anxiety and not a single disorder.
Histrionic personality disorder
It is one of a group of disorders called “cluster B” or “dramatic” personality disorders. People with these disorders have intense, unstable emotions and distorted self-images. For people with Histrionic Personality Disorder, their self-esteem is dependent on the approval of others and does not arise from a true feeling of self-worth, they have an overwhelming desire to be noticed, and they often behave in spectacular or inappropriate ways to call the attention. The word histrionic means “dramatic or theatrical.”
This disorder is more common in women than in men and is usually evident in adolescence or early adulthood. You can read more: Histrionic personality disorder
It is a disease that connects the mind and the body, this occurs in such a way that the physiological functioning of the body is affected by the psychological stresses that cause a disease or worsen the pre-existing disease in a person, it is also known as psychophysiological disorder. Inadequate stimulation of the autonomic nervous system, which regulates the functions of internal organs, is responsible for the evolution of this disorder and leads to a deterioration of the functional organs. Read more about: Psychosomatic disorder
It is a mental disorder diagnosed when the symptoms of schizophrenia are present for a significant part of the time within a period of one month, but the signs of interruption are not present during the full six months required for the diagnosis of schizophrenia.
Symptoms of both disorders can include delusions, hallucinations, disorganized language, disorganized or catatonic behavior, and social withdrawal. While a deterioration in social, occupational, or academic functioning is required for the diagnosis of schizophrenia, in schizophreniform disorder, an individual’s level of functioning may or may not be affected. Read more about: Schizophreniform disorder
Organic mental disorder
It is a dysfunction of the brain that can be permanent or temporary, it describes reduced brain function due to diseases that are not psychiatric in nature. Sometimes the term organic mental disorder is used interchangeably with the terms organic brain syndrome, chronic organic brain syndrome, or neurocognitive disorder; This last term is the one used most often now. Read more about: Organic mental disorder
Neuroses are characterized by anxiety, depression or other feelings of unhappiness or anguish that are not proportionate to the circumstances of a person’s life, they can affect the functioning of a person in practically any area of his life, relationships or external affairs, but they are not serious enough to incapacitate the person. In general, affected patients do not suffer from the loss of reality that is seen in people with psychosis. Read more about: Neurotic disorder
Binge eating disorder
It is an eating disorder characterized by frequent and recurrent binge-eating episodes with associated negative psychological and social problems, but no subsequent purging episodes (eg, vomiting). People who are diagnosed with bulimia nervosa and binge eating disorder exhibit similar patterns of compulsive overeating, neurobiological characteristics of dysfunctional cognitive control and food addiction, and biological and environmental risk factors. In fact, some consider it a milder version of bulimia, and that the conditions are on the same spectrum. Read more about : Eating Disorder
It is a serious mental disorder in which someone misleads others by appearing ill, by becoming ill intentionally or by self-harm, it can also occur when family members or caregivers falsely present others, such as children, as sick, injured or disabled. Read more about: Factitious disorder
Avoidant personality disorder
It is a psychiatric condition characterized by a permanent pattern of extreme social inhibition, feelings of inadequacy, and sensitivity to rejection. People with avoidant personality disorder may avoid work activities or decline job offers for fear of criticism or disappointment from others, they may be inhibited in social situations as a result of low self-esteem and feelings of inadequacy. Read more about: Avoidant Personality Disorder
Reactive attachment disorder
It is a condition found in children who may have received extremely negligent care and do not form a healthy emotional bond with their primary caregivers, usually their mothers, before the age of 5. Attachment develops when a child is comforted, comforted, and cared for multiple times, and when the caregiver consistently meets the child’s needs. It is through attachment to a loving and protective caregiver that a young child learns to love and trust others, to become aware of the feelings and needs of others, to regulate their emotions, and to develop healthy relationships and a positive self-image. Read more about: Reactive Attachment Disorder
Negative defiant disorder
Also called oppositional defiant disorder, it is a disruptive behavior disorder in children and adolescents characterized by rebellious and argumentative behavior patterns and hostile attitudes towards authority figures. Some parents may have a hard time recognizing it, thinking that they simply have a stubborn, emotional, or strong-willed child. However, the behavior of a child with this problem is much more extreme and disturbing than normal, occurring much more frequently than the kind of childish stubbornness, whining, and rebellion that often occur at different stages of a child’s development. . Read more about: Negative defiant disorder
Cyclothymia, or cyclothymic disorder, is a relatively mild mood disorder, moods ranging from short periods of mild depression to hypomania, an elevated mood. Low and high mood swings never reach the severity or duration of major depressive episodes or full mania. People with cyclothymic disorder have milder symptoms than those with complete bipolar disorder. Read more about: Cyclothymic disorder
It is a general term that describes the decline in mental function due to a medical illness other than a psychiatric illness. It is often used synonymously (but incorrectly) with dementia. Read more about: Neurocognitive disorder
A phobia is a type of anxiety disorder, defined by a persistent fear of an object or situation, usually resulting in a rapid onset of fear, and is present for more than six months. The affected person will do everything possible to avoid the situation or object, usually to a degree greater than the actual danger posed, if the feared object or situation cannot be avoided, the affected person will have significant distress.
Phobias can be divided into specific phobias, social phobia, and agoraphobia. Specific types of phobias include those of certain animals, natural environmental situations, blood or injury, and specific situations. The most common are fear of spiders, fear of snakes, and fear of heights. Read more about: Phobic disorder
Adjustment disorder is a short-term condition that occurs when a person has great difficulty coping with or adjusting to a certain source of stress, such as a major life change, loss, or event. Read more about: Adjustment disorder
Narcissistic personality disorder
It is a personality disorder in which there is a long-term pattern of abnormal behavior characterized by exaggerated feelings of self-importance, an excessive need for admiration, and a lack of understanding of the feelings of others. People affected by this often spend a lot of time thinking about achieving power or success, or about their appearance, taking advantage of the people around them. The behavior generally begins in early adulthood and occurs in a variety of situations. Read more about: Narcissistic Personality Disorder
Antisocial personality disorder
It is a personality disorder characterized by a long-term pattern of contempt or violation of the rights of others. An impoverished moral sense or conscience is often noted, as well as a history of crimes, legal problems, or impulsive and aggressive behavior. Read more about: Antisocial Personality Disorder
Dissociative identity disorder
Also known as multiple personality disorder, it is a mental disorder characterized by at least two distinct and relatively long-lasting personality states. Often there are problems remembering certain events, beyond what would be explained by ordinary forgetfulness, these states alternately show themselves in a person’s behavior. The associated condition often includes borderline personality disorder, post-traumatic stress disorder, depression, substance use disorder, self-harm, or anxiety. Read more about: Dissociative Identity Disorder
Paranoid personality disorder
It is an unwarranted tendency to interpret the actions of other people as deliberately threatening or degrading. The disorder, which appears in early adulthood, is manifested by a pervasive feeling of mistrust and unwarranted suspicion that produces persistent misinterpretations of the intentions of others as malicious. People generally cannot recognize their own negative feelings towards others, but they generally do not lose touch with reality, they will not trust people, even if they prove to be trustworthy, for fear of being exploited or betrayed. Read more about: Paranoid Personality Disorder
It is characterized by dramatic changes or extreme moods. The affective disorders may include manic episodes (status elevated, expansive or irritable mood with overactivity, pressure of speech and self – inflated) or depressive (I mood despondent with disinterest in life, disturbed sleep, agitation and feelings of worthlessness or guilt ) and often combinations of the two.
It occurs when the mood swings between extreme highs, debilitating lows, and near unconsciousness. Difficult to diagnose due to the intermediate phase between excess exuberance and despair, this “neutral” phase of Tripolar Disorder is not simply a place between extreme emotional ups and downs, but a deep psychological state of mind itself. Read more about: Tripolar disorder
Schizoid personality disorder
It is a personality disorder characterized by a lack of interest in social relationships, a tendency towards a solitary or sheltered lifestyle, secrecy, emotional coldness, detachment and apathy. Affected individuals may be unable to form intimate bonds with others while simultaneously displaying a rich, elaborate, and exclusively internal fantasy world. Read more about: Schizoid Personality Disorder
People with personality disorders have extreme and inflexible personality traits that are distressing to the person and / or that cause problems at work, school, or social relationships. Furthermore, the person’s thinking and behavior patterns differ significantly from society’s expectations and are so rigid that they interfere with the person’s normal functioning. Examples include antisocial personality disorder, obsessive-compulsive personality disorder, and paranoid personality disorder. Read more about: Personality disorders
Intermittent explosive disorder
It falls into the category of impulse control disorders. The condition is characterized by a lack of resistance to aggressive impulses, resulting in severe assaults, destruction of property, or frequent verbal aggression in the form of tantrums or tirades. Examples of this behavior include threatening or actually hurting another person and intentionally breaking or damaging an item of value. Read more about: Intermittent Explosive Disorder
A sleep disorder, or somnipathy, is a medical disorder of a person’s or animal’s sleeping patterns. Some sleep disorders are serious enough to interfere with normal physical, mental, social, and emotional functioning. Disruptions in sleep can be caused by a variety of problems, from teeth grinding (bruxism) to t errors night , when a person has difficulty falling asleep and / or staying asleep without obvious cause, it is known as insomnia.
Sleep disorders are broadly classified into dysomnias, parasomnias, circadian rhythm sleep disorders involving the timing of sleep, and other disorders, including those caused by medical or psychological conditions and sleeping sickness. Read more about: Sleep disorder
Psychotic disorders involve distorted consciousness and thinking, two of the most common symptoms are hallucinations, the experience of images or sounds that are not real, such as hearing voices, and delusions, which are false beliefs that the sick person accepts as true. despite evidence to the contrary. Schizophrenia is an example of a psychotic disorder. Read more about: Psychotic disorders
It refers to a condition in which an individual displays one or more delusions for a month or more, is distinct from schizophrenia, and cannot be diagnosed if a person meets the criteria for it. If a person has a delusional disorder, functioning is generally unaffected and the behavior is not obviously bizarre, with the exception of deception. Delusions may appear credible at face value, and patients may appear normal as long as a stranger does not touch on their delusional topics. Also, these delusions are not due to a medical condition or substance abuse. Read the full article on: Delusional Disorder
Generalized developmental disorders
They are a set of alterations that cause a delay and / or deviation from normal development patterns and that more significantly affect social and communicative areas. Read more about: Generalized developmental disorders
It is a mental disorder characterized by abnormal thought processes and unregulated emotions. The diagnosis is made when the person has features of both schizophrenia and a mood disorder, either bipolar disorder or depression , but does not strictly meet the diagnostic criteria on their own.
Common symptoms of the disorder include hallucinations, paranoid delusions, and disorganized speech and thinking, usually beginning in adulthood, currently with an uncertain lifetime prevalence because the disorder was redefined, but DSM-IV prevalence estimates have been less than one percent of the population, in the range of 0.5 to 0.8 percent. The diagnosis is based on observed behavior and experiences reported by the person. Read more about: Schizoaffective disorder
A person with a somatic symptom disorder, formerly known as psychosomatic disorder or somatoform disorder, experiences physical symptoms of illness or pain with an excessive and disproportionate level of distress, regardless of whether or not a doctor can find a medical cause for the symptoms. symptom. Read more about: Somatic disorders
Conversion disorder is a mental condition in which a person has blindness, paralysis, or other nervous system (neurological) symptoms that cannot be explained by a medical evaluation. Read more about: Conversion disorder
It occurs when abnormal chemical reactions in your body interrupt this process, when this happens you may have too many or too little substances that you need to stay healthy. There are different groups of disorders, some affect the breakdown of amino acids, carbohydrates, or lipids. Another group, mitochondrial diseases, affects the parts of cells that produce energy. Read more about: Metabolic disorder
They are diseases of the brain, spinal column and the nerves that connect them. There are more than 600 diseases of the nervous system, such as brain tumors, epilepsy , Parkinson’s disease, and stroke, as well as less familiar ones such as frontotemporal dementia.
Post-traumatic stress disorder
It is a mental disorder that can develop after a person is exposed to a traumatic event, such as sexual assault, war, traffic collisions, or other threats in a person’s life. Symptoms may include disturbing thoughts, feelings or dreams related to the events, mental or physical distress to trauma-related cues, attempts to avoid trauma-related cues, disturbances in how a person thinks and feels. These symptoms last more than a month after the event. Read more about: Post Traumatic Stress Disorder
Seasonal affective disorder
It is a subset of mood disorders in which people who are in normal mental health for most of the year show depressive symptoms at the same time each year, most commonly in the winter. People can sleep too much or have little energy. Read more about: Seasonal affective disorder
It can cause problems with understanding and / or use of spoken, written and other forms of language. Students with a language disorder may have difficulties with the form, content, or function of language. Read more about: Language disorder
Attention deficit disorder
It is a condition characterized by inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the most commonly diagnosed conduct disorder in youth, reports that it affects approximately 9 percent of children ages 3 to 17 and 2-4 percent of hundred of adults. Read more about: Attention deficit disorder
Obsessive compulsive disorder
It is a type of anxiety disorder. The term is often used incorrectly in everyday conversation. Read more about: Obsessive Compulsive Disorder
Anxiety or hypochondria disorders
It is a group of mental disorders characterized by significant feelings of anxiety and fear. Anxiety is a worry about future events and fear is a reaction to current events, these feelings can cause physical symptoms, such as a racing heartbeat and tremors.
There are a number of anxiety disorders: including generalized anxiety disorder , specific phobia, social anxiety disorder, separation anxiety disorder , agoraphobia , panic disorder, and selective mutism . The disorder differs depending on the results of the symptoms, people often have more than one anxiety disorder.
Bipolar disorder or manic depression
It is a chronic disease with recurring bouts of mania and depression that can last from a day to months, causing unusual and dramatic changes in mood, energy, and the ability to think clearly. Cycles of high (manic) and low (depressive) moods can follow an irregular pattern that differs from the typical ups and downs experienced by most people. The symptoms of bipolar disorder can have a negative impact on a person’s life. Read more about: Bipolar disorder
It is an intense obsession with fire, explosives and their related effects, it is also an obsession with intentionally starting fires. An individual with pyromania is referred to as a pyromaniac who is specifically identified as having no other symptoms but an obsession with the fire that causes their behavior. Read more about: Pyromania
Hello, how are you? My name is Georgia Tarrant, and I am a clinical psychologist. In everyday life, professional obligations seem to predominate over our personal life. It's as if work takes up more and more of the time we'd love to devote to our love life, our family, or even a moment of leisure.