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Antipsychotic Drugs (Coursework Sample)

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1. Discuss antipsychotic drugs, and mention a few typical side effects. Briefly explain electroconvulsive therapy and neurosurgery.
2. List and explain the four basic techniques of Freudian psychoanalysis.
3. Briefly discuss two examples of each of the following categories of therapy: behavior, cognitive/cognitive-behavioral, and humanistic-experiential.
4. Explain the difference between universal, selective, and indicated interventions.
5. Explain the concept of the mental hospital as a therapeutic community.

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1. Discuss antipsychotic drugs, and mention a few typical side effects. Briefly explain electroconvulsive therapy and neurosurgery.
Goldberg (2010) identifies that antipsychotic drugs are used to treat and mange psychological disorders ranging from psychosis to violent behavior to schizophrenia. They are also known as major tranquilizers or neuroleptics. Although antipsychotic drugs have long been used to relieve anxiety, this is not their primary purpose. They are used especially for schizophrenia, not to sure it or other forms of mental illness but as a treatment for symptoms associated with mental illness. Any patient suffering from mental illness or schizophrenia is able to function properly while under the antipsychotic medication. Examples of antipsychotic drugs include haloperidol, trifluoperazine, promazine, and thioridazine (Mellaril). For maximum effectiveness, patients are advised to take doses that last about 4 to 6 weeks. Most of the times, the drugs are ingested as injection may release the medication slowly over several thus offering low effectiveness.
However, antipsychotic drugs may cause a number of side effects. Antipsychotic drugs are absorbed erratically, thus, it is difficult to determine an effective dose precisely. These drugs may build up in fatty areas in the brain and lungs. The side effects of antipsychotic drugs may also include weight gain, dry mouth, blurred vision, drowsiness, interference with patient’s sex life, and muscle tremors or spasms (Schwartz, Megna & Topel, 2012).
Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) refers to a procedure that involves the passing of electric currents through the brain with the objective of triggering a brief seizure. The effectiveness of the mild electric currents on the brain lies in their ability to cause some distortion in the brain chemistry thus reversing some mental conditions. The technological advancements have ensured that the procedure can be performed safely on patients at minimal risk. On the other hand, neurosurgery refers to a medical procedure that attempts to manipulate the nervous system through surgical operations with the aim of treating certain disorders affecting some portions of the brain. 2. List and explain the four basic techniques of Freudian psychoanalysis.
Freud developed four basic techniques to uncover the unconscious roots of neurosis. These techniques manifest as follows:
* Free association. "This is based on the freedom to say whatever comes to mind without worrying whether ideas are painful, embarrassing, or illogical" (Coon, 2014). Under this technique, thoughts are left to flow freely without any form of censorship. Free association aims at reducing the defense mechanisms that suppress unconscious thoughts or feelings can be expressly freely. As a result, an individual does not fear about the consequences of expressing himself or herself.
* Data analysis. Freud held the belief that dreams acts as a cover for feelings that individuals may deem unacceptable while under a conscious state of mind. A psychoanalyst can use this "royal road to the unconscious" to help the patient work past the obvious, visible meaning of the dream to unearth the hidden and symbolic meaning (Coon & Mitterer, 2012). The psychoanalyst analyses the dream symbols.
* Analysis of resistance. In most cases, patients seeking psychiatric help display a tendency of resisting change despite the underlying health benefits of change to them. For instance, while opening up to the psychoanalysts, the patients may be unwilling to open up about certain topics. Such resistances highlight blockages in the flow of ideas or insights and reveal important unconscious conflicts. The analysts points out the resistances to the patients with a bid of helping them to deal with them in a realistic manner.
* Analysis of transference. "Transference is the tendency to transfer feelings to a therapist similar to those the patient had for important persons in his or her past" (Coon, 2014). The patient may see the analyst as a rejecting father, or maybe a former lover. The patient re-experiences repressed emotions thus analyst gets a chance to recognize and understand them thus helping the patients to go through the therapeutic change process (Coon, 2014).
3. Briefly discuss two examples of each of the following categories of therapy: behavior, cognitive/cognitive-behavioral, and humanistic-experiential.
Cognitive-behavioral therapy examples includes functional analytic psychotherapy that analyses verbal behavior by utilizing a radical behaviorist. In addition, cognitive therapy aims at changing thoughts of an individual thus assisting in the achievement of better emotions and behaviors.
Humanistic-experiential therapy includes person-centered therapy and gestalt therapy. The person-centered approach allows the patients to develop themselves through the therapist’s efforts to have some form of empathy and being open to the patient. Gestalt therapy allows for the gradual progress from speaking about general situations to a more detailed and personalized aspects of life with the patients.
Behavior therapy includes functional analytic psychotherapy that analyses verbal behavior by utilizing a radical behaviorist.
4. Explain the difference between universal, selective, and indicated interventions.
Evans (2005) identifies three valuable preventive interventions in the early stages of schizophrenia such as during adolescences. Universal prevention interventions target an entire populations with the main objective of reducing risk and encouraging protective aspects. On the other hand, selective and indicated interventions focus on certain subgroups in the population for intervention. Sel...
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