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Psychiatric Disorders, Diseases, and Drugs Essay

There are five main psychiatric disorders and they are schizophrenia, depression, mania, anxiety disorders, and Tourette syndrome. Psychiatric disorders are “disorders of psychological function sufficiently sever to require treatment” Pinel, J. P. J. (2011). The main fact about these psychiatric disorders is that they are difficult to diagnose. They use the DSM-IV-TR to diagnose patients that is the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of the American Psychiatric Association.

The first psychiatric disorder is Schizophrenia, this disorder is “the splitting of psychic functions” Pinel, J. P. J. (2011). This is a disease that breaks down the emotion, thought, and action, which is chaos or madness. Schizophrenia is divided into five different categories and they are disorganized, paranoid, residual, and undifferentiated. Each of these have their own set of symptoms, but schizophrenia affects a person’s behavior, logic, and emotions. There is positive symptoms and negative symptoms of schizophrenia. The positive symptoms are delusions, hallucinations, inappropriate affect, incoherent speech or thought, and odd behavior. The negative symptoms are affective flattening, alogia, avolition, and anhedonia. There was a neurodevelopmental theory of schizophrenia during the 20th-century two famines a Dutch and a Chinese famine had mother who were diagnosed with schizophrenia and these two by adults would most likely have it as well.

The first antischizophrenic drug was chlorpromazine. This drug helps agitated patients and the severity of schizophrenic symptoms. Later reserpine was given, which is an active ingredient of the snakeroot plant. This was given to patients with schizophrenia, but was taken off for treatment because it caused a huge incline in blood pressure that could be fatal. Through these two together, the discovery of Parkinson’s disease came about. The dopamine theory of schizophrenia is caused” by too much dopamine and, conversely, that antischizophrenic drug exert their effects by decreasing dopamine levels Pinel, J. P. J. (2011). People who suffer from schizophrenia have a decent amount of brain damage.

The next ones are affective disorders, which include depression and mania. Everyone has depression at one time or another and it becomes stressful to you, your body, and even people around you. There is anhedonia “loss of the capacity to experience pleasure” Pinel, J. P. J. (2011). This is people who fall into despair for no apparent reasons, it just happens. When this happens, it causes them to slowly slip away from life and their normal daily routines and can be quite deadly to them if they fall too much. If this happens for more than two weeks then they might diagnose them with clinical depression, or major depressive disorder. The second affective disorder is mania, which is almost the total opposite of depression. Mania is “characterized by overconfidence, impulsivity, distractibility, and high energy. Depression and Mania are also under mood swings category. People who show mild mania might be talkative, energetic, impulsive, positive, and extremely confident.

At this point, in a person’s mania they can do there day to day activities nicely but when it becomes extreme it can become a huge problem for them and possibly others around them. If there, mania becomes too extreme they will feel like nothing can stop them and it can get in the way of the many things that they are achieving in their lives. For people who are depressive they might experience episodes of mania and if they do experience mania they are known to suffer from bipolar affective disorder. The ones who do not suffer from mania are under unipolar affective disorder. Depression is under two categories and these are negative experience (reactive depression) and depression for no apparent reason (endogenous depression). Four main drugs are treatment for affective disorders and these are monoamine oxidase inhibitors, tricyclic antidepressants, selective monoamine reuptake inhibitors, and mood stabilizers.

MAO inhibitors have several side effects and the most dangerous is called the cheese effect. Cheese, wine, and pickles all contain what they call tyramine and it causes high blood pressure when mixed with the MAO inhibitors. Tricyclic antidepressants don’t cause any major side effects and is safer compare to MAO inhibitors. SSRIs and Prozac don’t have many side effects and they help with other psychological disorders other than just depression. They help with lack of self-esteem, fear of failure, excessive sensitivity to criticism, and inability to experience pleasure. They even help with the rates of suicides. The last one is mood stabilizers, which are antidepressant drugs, and they act against depression without increasing mania, or they act against mania without increasing depression (Bourin & Prica, 2007).

Mood stabilizers are very effective and help with epilepsy. Lithium is what calms a patient in the mood stabilizers, but they cause extreme nausea as well or major sickness. All in all the best treatment for depression is lamotigine, and the best for treating mania is lithium and carbamazepine. Monoamine theory of depression “holds that depression is associated with underactivity at serotonergic and noradrenergic synapses” Pinel, J. P. J. (2011). A nice remedy or alternative for coping with depression and is trying to stay motivated and exercise. Light exercises can help keep you calm and get used to your life again and keep you healthy after all the stress you have been put through already from all the stress. This helps because you release feel good brain chemicals, rude immune system chemicals, increase body temperature, gain confidence, takes your mind off worries, and cope in a healthy way (Mayo Clinic, 2013).

Anxiety disorders relate to stress a lot. Anxiety disorders that are severe in patients make it hard to cope with day-to-day activities and they can’t function normally. People who have this have feelings of anxiety, which might include fear, worry, and despondency. When they get these type of symptoms it can lead to rapid heartbeat, high blood pressure, nausea, breathing difficulty, sleep disturbances, and high glucocorticoid levels. There is five classes of anxiety disorders and they are generalized anxiety disorders, phobic anxiety disorders, panic disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorders, and posttraumatic stress disorders. There are three types of treatments for these disorders and they are benzodiazepines, serotonin agonists, and antidepressants.

Benzodiazepines, which are Librium and valium, are the usual medicines prescribed for treatment and they help as sleep aids, anti convulsants, and muscle relaxants. The side effects include sedation, ataxia, tremor, nausea, and a withdrawal reaction, which causes rebound anxiety. These drugs are also very addictive and sold illegally if not prescribed to the right people who really need them for short periods. Serotonin agonists buspirone is used a decent amount in the treatment for anxiety disorders. This drug helps with producing anxiolytic, which is anti-anxiety, and it helps by not producing ataxia, muscle relaxation, and sedation. The side effects that it does cause are nausea, headache, and insomnia.

Tourette syndrome is the last one to talk about, it is a psychiatric disorder, and its different from the other three already discussed which include schizophrenia, affective disorders, and anxiety. The main symptom of Tourette’s is the tics. Tourette syndrome is a disorder in which they call the tics, which is involuntary, repetitive, stereotyped movements or vocalizations. This disorder happens in younger people or young adults. Sudden jerks and eye movements are usually the first signs and eventually it worsens, as they get older. The common complex motor tics include hitting, touching objects, squatting, and hopping, twirling, and sometimes-lewd gestures. The common verbal tics include inarticulate sounds such as barking, coughing, grunting, uttering obscenities, repetition of another’s words, and the repetition of one’s own words.

People with this disorder can live normal lives if they have supportive and understanding people around them. It can get in the way of making friends and even getting a job if people don’t understand their condition. The first of the treatments for this disorder is family, friends, the patient, and teachers be educated on the condition. The second part of the treatment is finding out the emotional problems such as anxiety or depression, after this the treatment will be taken for the patient symptoms. One treatment is neuroleptics, which reduce tics by about 70% if the patient can be given the drug. The side effects are weight gain, fatigue, and dry mouth.

Comprehensive behavioral intervention for Tics (CBIT) is something that is new and it’s a behavioral therapy for TS and chronic tic disorders. This includes habit reversal and other strategies, which include education about tics and relaxation techniques. This is a very effective program that starts when the child is young and even adults and they try to find better ways for the kids and adults to fit in, in any type of situation including in school and jobs (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention , 2013).


Centers for Disease Control and Prevention . (2013). Tourette Syndrome (TS). Retrieved from http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/tourette/treatments.html

Mayo Clinic. (2013). Depression (major depression). Retrieved from http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/depression-and-exercise/MH00043

Pinel, J. P. J. (2011). Biopsychology (8th ed.). Boston, MA: Pearson.

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