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Text Box: Mental Disorders & Symptoms

Text Box: Eating Disorder—Anorexia
Factitious Disorder
Hypochondriasis
Obsessive Compulsive
Panic Attacks
PDD (childhood)
Psychosis
PTSD
Schizo-Affective
Schizophrenia
Sexual Disorder

   The disorders listed here (a partial list from hundreds of disorders) are diagnosed based upon commonly referred to criteria.  The criteria are found in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic & Statistical Manual (DSM-IV TR) 2.  The DSM-IV TR is the leading professionally researched, developed and endorsed medical collection of universally recognized disorders. 

   Accordingly, the information found on this page regarding symptoms of mental disorders comes from the DSM-IV TR.  The symptoms listed are paraphrased, and include dominant features—rule out variables are not included here.  None of the symptoms listed address the possibility that professional interpretations might vary among different mental health practitioners and among practice specialists.

   The DSM-IV TR contains family patterns, onset, cultural factors, rule out considerations, prevalence, gender differences, age differences, and symptomology. 

It also addresses medically induced disorders.  The DSM-IV TR provides other factors to consider in diagnosis.  It is important to consider that not all professionals use the PIE Perspective in their assessment approach, a comprehensive view in accurate diagnosis.

   Diagnosis is commonly made during a subjective assessment process—that is, interpretations are made based upon the perspectives and beliefs of the professional doing the assessment.  Subjective beliefs are usually rooted in what is known as practice wisdom, and when assessment occurs with the use of psychometric instruments, practice wisdom can be less subjective.

   The Department of Health and Human Services reports that about 44 million people a year experience a mental disorder1.  Research indicates that one in every five children experience mental disorders.

   If you believe you (or someone you love) is experiencing symptoms of a mental disorder remember that a diagnosis can only be made by a licensed mental health professional—and some offer free initial consultations.

 

 Craving—a strong drive to use.

 Frequent / Recurrent Use—throughout the day, in the morning, etc.

 Withdrawal (after use)—sleep disturbance, anxiety, tremors, sweats, shakes.

 Tolerance— Increased amounts are needed to get intoxicated.

 Use continues—in spite of negative consequences.

 Unable to maintain limits—uses more than what was planned or agreed.

 Activities central to use—they are centered around being able to use.

 Isolation—form activities or hobbies that no longer involve use.

Bi-Polar I Disorder

Alcoholism

Anxiety Disorder

Attention Deficit Disorder

Bi-Polar II Disorder

Depression

Disorders Introduced Here

Alcoholism

Anxiety Disorder

The symptoms listed are linked to Generalized Anxiety Disorder.

 

 Excessive anxiety or worry—more days than not (at least 6 months).

 Inability to Control the Worry—it is difficult for the person to stop.

 Anxiety / Worry linked to at least three of: 

     Restlessness  or “edgy,” easily fatigued, inability to concentrated

     (or going blank), irritability, muscle tension, or sleep disturbance.

 Anxiety / worry significantly limits a person’s ability to function, day to day.

 

NOTE: phobias have specific other symptoms that are not listed here.

Six or more of #1 or #2:

 #1: Fails to give attention to details, difficulty sustaining attention, doesn’t listen when spoken to, fails to complete tasks, inability to organize, avoids structured tasks, loses things, easily distracted, or forgetful.

 #2: Fidgets or squirms, unable to stay seated, runs/climbs excessively, inability to engage in activities quietly, acts as if “driven by a motor,” talks excessively, blurts out / interrupts often, inability to take turns, or intrudes on others.

 Above symptoms existed prior to age seven.

 Above symptoms are present in two or more settings.

 Symptoms impair social, academic or occupational functioning.

 The symptoms are not better accounted for by another disorder.

Bi-Polar I disorder is complex.  The symptoms listed are incomplete and limited due to the variations in a Bi-Polar I disorder. 

 

 Manic Episodes Exist:

     Persistent elevated/irritable mood lasting at least 1 week

 During the mood disturbance three or more of:

     Inflated self-esteem, decreased need for sleep, talkative, flighty ideas,

     easily distracted, intense goal-directed actions, excessive involvement

     in pleasurable (yet risky) behaviors (shopping sprees, poor

     investments, sexual acting out).

 Causes significant impairment in social/academic/occupational functioning and may require hospitalization. (safety) &/or there are psychotic features

 Hypomanic Episodes Exist:    

     Persistent elevated/irritable mood lasting at least 4 days & unlike non-depressed moods:

 During the mood disturbance three or more of:

     Inflated self-esteem, decreased need for sleep, talkative, flighty ideas,

     easily distracted, intense goal-directed actions, excessive involvement

     in pleasurable (yet risky) behaviors (shopping sprees, poor

     investments, sexual acting out).

 Causes significant impairment in social/academic/occupational functioning and may require hospitalization.

 Presence (or hx) of Major Depressive Episode(s)

 At least one Hypomanic episodes

 There has never been a Manic Episode or a Mixed Episode

 Causes significant impairment in social/academic/occupational functioning (w/out hospitalization or psychotic features).

 Five or more of the following symptoms have been present during a 2 week period and it is a change from prior functioning; one symptom is either depressed or loss of interest/pleasure (and not due to a medical condition)

 Depressed mood most of the day, almost everyday (in children may appear as irritability)

 Marked diminished interest or pleasure in nearly all activities, most of the day

 Significant weight loss when not dieting (5% in 30 days) or a decrease in appetite nearly every day (in children can be failure to make gains).

 Insomnia or hypersomnia nearly every day

 Psychomotor agitation/retardation nearly every day

 Fatigue or loss of energy nearly every day

 Feelings of worthlessness, excessive/inappropriate guilt (nearly every day)

 Diminished concentration, or indecisiveness (nearly every day)

 Recurrent thoughts of death, recurrent suicidal ideation without a plan, or a suicide attempt or a plan

 The symptoms  do not meet the Mixed Episode criteria

 The symptoms  are not due to effects of substances (or a general medical condition)

 The symptoms are not due to bereavement, the symptoms last longer than 2 months, include marked impairment, morbid preoccupation with worthlessness, suicidal ideation, psychotic symptoms or psychomotor retardation.

Drug Dependency is labeled specific to the substance used (alcohol, opioids, PCP, Cocaine, Cannabis, Amphetamines, etc. etc.), but in general:

 A maladaptive pattern of use, leading to clinical impairment, as manifest in three or more criteria occurring during any 12 month period

 Tolerance (increased or decreased)

 Withdrawal Syndrome (varies usually by substance type)

 Substance is taken in larger amounts than intended, over a longer period of time

 Persistent desire or unsuccessful efforts to cut down or control use

 A great deal of time is spent to obtain, use, and recover from use

 Important social activities are given up or reduced for use

 Substance use continues in spite of knowledge of mental/physical problems exacerbated by use

 NOTE:  Can include physical or psychological dependence

Bulimia Nervosa can be of a “purging type” or of a “nonpurging type.”

 There are recurrent episodes of binge eating, characterized by both of the following

 1) Eating in a discrete period of time (within any 2 hour period) an amount of food that is definitely larger than most people would eat in a similar period of time under similar circumstances and

 2) a sense of lack of control over eating during the episode (a feeling of not being able to stop or a feeling of not being to control the amount).

 Recurrent inappropriate compensatory behavior to prevent weight gain

 The binges and the compensatory behavior both occur at least 2 time a week in a three month period

 Self evaluation is unduly influenced by body shape and weight

 The disturbance does not occur exclusively during episodes of anorexia nervosa

Text Box: Symptoms Continued Here

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