Are mental health problems really caused by chemical imbalances and genetic predispositions? Are psychiatric drugs as effective and safe as the drug companies claim?
Essay on the Experience of Mental Illness Sociology In what ways does gender shape the experience of mental illness? Women and mental health is a vast topic and we do not presume to cover all aspects of it within the confines of this essay.
We will, however, explore a number of relevant themes in some detail by particular reference to peer reviewed literature on the subject. In doing so, we recognise the fact that it is vital to make a critical assessment of the literature as, in any branch of medically related work, it is vital to acquire a firm evidence base.
Much of the literature that we have assessed for consideration amounts to little more than simple opinion on a subject, and as such, is only of use as an opinion rather than a fact that has been subject to proper scientific scrutiny.
In this essay we take note of opinions but aim to present verifiable facts. Mental illness in general terms We do know that mental illness in the UK is associated with a significant burden of both disability and morbidity in general, and this will vary with both the severity of the illness at any given time and also the nature of the illness itself.
A number of studies have shown that, as a lifetime experience, nearly half of the population will suffer some kind of quantifiable psychological or psychiatric disorder. Bayer, The actual incidence of morbidity is hard to assess accurately. Firstly because doctors tend to under-diagnose positive psychiatric morbidity and secondly because there is a general reluctance to seek medical help with this type of complaint.
Castle DJ et al It is also fair to comment that an examination of the literature seems to suggest that the morbidity which appears to be associated with mental disorders has been the subject of more attention and research than the actual determinants and mechanisms that appear to be significant in both the promotion of mental health, and protection against mental illness, together with those factors which appear to give a degree of resilience against stress and other adversities which are gender specific.
Gender differences We do know that a number of psychiatric illnesses have different rates of presentation. Just why should this be? A number of authors point to various features of gender difference that may account for this difference. Castle et al spend a large proportion of their book differentiating the male and female brain in terms of the effect of testosterone on neurodevelopment.
While this is undeniably a source of difference, it would appear that their argument rather falls apart when other authors point to the fact that the differences that we are considering here are actually better correlated with both gender and culture than actual biological sex.
Pattison Gender has much deeper socio-economic and cultural implications than simply a sexual consideration. It is gender that is one of the prime determinants of the differential power and status factors that influence the degree of control that both men and women have over their socio-economic situation and social position in their own cultural hierarchy.
This, in turn, determines both their susceptibility, and indeed their exposure, to significant mental health risks. Busfield J We have already alluded, in passing, to the differential incidence of various illnesses. We know that depression and anxiety related patterns of illness, together with those that have a significant element of somatosisation of their symptomatology, are more likely to occur in women than men with a ratio of about 3: Illnesses such as reactive unipolar depression is found to occur with double the frequency in women, when compared to men.
This particular disease process is statistically the most common mental health problem that affects women, but it also tends to be more persistent in women both in terms of longevity of the episode and in frequency of relapse.
APA Gender differences are also apparent when it comes to a consideration of substance abuse, however it is usual to find the reverse ratio in most studies on the subject. Alcohol abuse and dependence will occur 2. It is not certain whether these changes are primarily cultural or biological, as they do vary to a degree between different cultures, but the sex difference is generally found.
Kraemer S Unlike the unipolar depressive disorder, bipolar disorder, like schizophrenia, has no differential rate of presentation although there are defined differences in the disease trajectory in terms of age at presentation, the frequency and nature of the first rank psychotic symptoms.
This may have a bearing on the longer term sequelae such as social readjustment and long term disease process outcome. Kaplan HI et al It is also a demonstrable fact that the degree of morbidity rises exponentially with multiple degrees of comorbidity.
In studies on the subject, women outnumber men in this area as well. The gender based role in a particular society certainly in the UKwill produce different exposure to different stressors and negative life experiences.
Equally it will give different exposure to the protective effect of a positive life experience.Within this frame, especially in those countries in which community mental health services are most developed and psychiatrists are leading those services, there is a call for dealing with “mental health problems” which are not proper mental disorders, such as the serious psychological distress occurring as a consequence of a natural disaster or of the ongoing economic crisis.
Compare and contrast two of the five approaches to mental health & illness within Sociology. (social causation, social reaction (labelling theory) Compare and contrast two of the five approaches to mental health & illness within Sociology.
Both these theories examined within this essay offer a radical conception of mental health in. Jan 26, · A more statistically robust approach is a confirmatory factor model, which showed that the latent factors of mental health and mental illness in a US sample (n = 3,) correlated at , indicating that only one quarter of the variance between measures of mental illness and mental .
The biological approach looks into two main areas, the area of genetics, indicating a heritable component to major mood disorders, especially bipolar disorders (Hindman, Davison, Neale & Kring ) and the biochemical, looking at the levels of hormones and neurotransmitters.
Understanding mental health is a very complex concept. The antiquity of mental illness and madness tells two common and defective definitions of mental health. The first, that mental health is the absence of mental illness, while the second that mental health is a state of well-being (Tudor, ).
Evaluation of these approaches may be done in terms of appropriateness and effectiveness. Ethical implications are raised as the psychologist use human subjects for these therapies.
Psychodynamic therapies are based on the approach of Freud (), mental health illness and the treatments.