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The Psychological Disorder Is Schizophrenia

By:   •  February 10, 2019  •  Essay  •  556 Words (3 Pages)  •  203 Views

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The psychological disorder that I have chosen to write about is Schizophrenia. “Schizophrenia is the disorder that most closely corresponds to popular concepts of insanity, madness, or lunacy (Nevid, 2015). Nearly one million people are treated for schizophrenia, one-third receiving hospitalized care. It can be characterized by bizarre and irrational behavior. Schizophrenia is more common in men than in women. “Men also tend to develop the disorder a bit earlier than women and to experience a more severe form of the disorder” (Nevid, 2015). Schizophrenia is life long and typically develops in late adolescence or early adulthood.

        “Schizophrenia is a psychotic disorder-that is, a disorder in which an individual confuses reality with fantasy, seeing or hearing things that aren’t there (hallucinations) or holding fixed but patently false beliefs (delusions)” (Nevid, 2015). Types of hallucinations auditory (hearing voices), visual (seeing things that are not there), and other sensory hallucinations (sensing odors or taste sensations without physical stimulus). “Delusions may represent many different themes, but the most common are themes of persecution, such as the belief that demons or “the Devil” are trying to harm the person” (Nevid, 2015). People with schizophrenia may not know what day it is, where they are or who they are. They can exhibit a thought disorder, a breakdown in the logical structure of thinking and speech. The person’s ideas can be strung loosely together or jumbled in such a way that the listener is unable to follow the train of thought. “In severe cases, speech becomes completely incoherent or incomprehensible” (Nevid, 2015). “In rare cases, patients with schizophrenia show catatonic behavior, remaining in a motionless state or stupor in which they appear unresponsive to the environment” (Nevid, 2015).

        There is large evidence that indicates schizophrenia can be strongly affected by genetic factors. “The closer the person shares with someone who has schizophrenia, the greater the likelihood the person will also have or develop schizophrenia” (Nevid, 2015). Identical twins are more likely to share the disorder in common than fraternal twins. Children of parents who have the disorder are more likely to develop schizophrenia themselves. “Although genetics clearly plays an important role in the development of schizophrenia, genes do not tell the whole story” (Nevid, 2015). “Researchers suspect that biochemical or neurotransmitter imbalances in nerve pathways in the brain, especially those involving the neurotransmitter dopamine, are involved in the development of schizophrenia” (Nevid, 2015). Schizophrenia patient’s brains do not appear to produce too much dopamine; rather dopamine receptors may be overly sensitive to the chemical. Scans of schizophrenia patient’s brains consistently show abnormalities. Patients often show structural changes in the brain, like enlarge ventricles. The prefrontal cortex and parts of the limbic system as well as the connections between these regions appear to be the most affected.

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