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Psychological Disorder Analysis (Case Study Sample)


Marla is a 42-year-old Hispanic female who comes to the mental health clinic complaining of having trouble sleeping, feeling \"jumpy all of the time,\" and experiencing an inability to concentrate. These symptoms are causing problems for her at work, where she is an accountant. Resources: Appendix A, Fundamentals of Abnormal Psychology, and the Faces of Abnormal Psychology Interactive application at the McGraw Hill Higher Education Web site Write a 1,400- to 1,750-word paper analyzing Marla??


Dysthymic Disorder

Disorders incapacitate normal performances of those who put up with them. They occur in diverse varieties and in the history of disorders; many regions in the world have experienced them and are thus a common occurrence in many societies in the world today. Unlike diseases that cause physical inabilities in normal functioning, disorders are undetectable by ordinary people unless victims’ observed behaviors have reached chronic stages that involves human lives interferences through destructive activities. There are no restrictions in age limits for disorders and thus everyone is prone to undergo some kind of a disorder, usually detectable from childhood (Corner, 2010, p.4).
From the symptoms seen when I asked Maria to tell me about herself, she seems to suffer from a disorder called Dysthymic disorder. By definition, Dysthymic Disorder is a growth disorder characterized with a lot of nervousness like the “jumpy all the time feeling”, lack of attention, disinterested tendencies in activities, loss of sleep for several days and esteem –related problems. It starts to show up in children from the ages of seven and above. It is projected from the case when I asked Maria; tell me what your life was like growing up, that victims of this type of disorder usually undergo long durations of this bout if not detected and treated and can thus persists for many years. In cases where diagnosis fails or is absent, victims tend to think the continual depression is a part of their daily lives and thus consider it a normal behavior for them although this behavior is not present at childhood evident from Marias answer on asking “What type of social background did you have as a child”.
This condition is not inborn but rather acquired at some point in life especially after acquisition of major depressive experiences. Due to its nature, it affects more adults as compared to children and has been observed to be more prevalent on women than men in adulthood due to the fact that they are prone to more stress resulting from emotional reactions but other studies have been indicative of more adolescent boys being prone to undergo this condition. Statistically, global occurrence is estimated to be for 3-5 percent of all people and thus is readily available. When I asked Maria “What is your take on therapy and why are you pursuing it” It can be said that misplaced understanding of the disorder on the victim’s side and immediate environment, ignorance has prevailed with dismissive claims on this condition describing this condition as simply ‘moody’ consequently resulting to substance abuse due to hardships in containment of depression levels in individuals with this (Corner, 2010, p.18).
This disorder and thus the term Dysthymic Disorder (or Dysthymia) emerged into the psychiatry world in the early eighties with definition that showed association of potential victims to their innate abilities for experiencing depressive moods. The introduction gave direct implication of direct association of potential acquisition to natural ability to undergo depression and thus those who frequently experience depression were thought to have higher chances of suffering this disorder. Early researchers proposed the term ‘ill-humored’ for the disorder for tendencies in the type of depression undergone by its victims.
Subsequent and current clinical research has completely failed in reaching an agreement as regards identification of the disorder through diagnosis although there were serious observable statistics in the seventies on this disorder. During that period, its name was different, relating to neurosis and depression. Continuous efforts have been made so far in trying to understand it further and reaching clinical agreements for diagnostic approaches but still debate rages on the exact diagnostic steps. In this regard the DSM-IV-IR diagnostic tool has made serious recognitions for this disorder as not just a character type but rather as a chief depressive disorder.
Implications and symptoms.
The signs and symptoms of this disorder are highly variant and affective of the whole domain of human functions. Depressive states lead to feelings of desperation, insomnia, great bouts of extremely low self-esteem and irritabilities. When I asked Maria “Do you have any romantic relationships if so how is that relationship going? And how does the relationship with your partner make you feel?” there is reduced or absence of sex drives and poor appetite just to name but a few. Great occurrences of ‘feeling jumpy’ to lack of attention in every activities done as a result of distraction from depression and continual desperation is also another serious symptom of this disorder (Corner, 2010, p.6).
Diagnosis through criteria.
According to the published manual for diagnosis for this condition by the APA, DSM diagnostic approach undertakes fervent quest for characteristics typical of the condition in diverse domains (MHHE, 2010).). Although depression is the major characteristic of the condition, accuracy in needed for correct diagnosis hence correct treatment or therapy administered. Low self esteem, serious turbulences in sleep, lack of appetite may just be dismissed for mistaken moody individual association and thus has developed diagnostic criteria.
The first criterion points that, an individual with this condition, and especially adults as observed or reported, experience depressed moods to others during most of the times during a period of one to two years. During this time, the individual shows signs of diminished appetite, reduced sleep, weakened self-esteem, exhibition of hopelessness and serious problems in concentration in daily activities. During a given two year period, the symptoms are ever-present and can not go away for two consecutive months. In other cases, individuals is examined to ensure no previous records of manic behavior, no fulfilled requirements for cyclonic disorders, the depression present is not associated with other disorders such as delusional or schizophrenic disorders and are thus independent of related medical illnesses. Lastly, examination is done in terms of influence of the symptoms in the daily life of the involved individual like for example in work places, institutions of learning and other social groupings (MHHE, 2010).
Dysthymia has been described as one of the conditions that experiences frequent misdiagnosis and thus consequently undergone under-treatments. Given that the symptoms associated with this condition are always present in a person’s life style for a period of years, negligence on seeking medical attention is quite rampant since consideration of the symptoms as integral to daily life appears normal. As has been reported, many people never come to a realization for this condition through their symptoms of depression and are thus never recognizant of this problem. When left unchecked thus untreated, this condition leads to either serious depressive disorder or another serious depressive condition called bipolar disorder.
Treatment domains for Dysthymia that takes psychotherapeutic approach, use of antidepressants and through self-help schemes. The best type of approach is the amalgamation of all the available domains of treatment though there was absence of parental relationships when I asked “How your relationship with your parents is and how does the relationship with your parents make yo...
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