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Mental Illness

  • Broadcast in Health
Getting It Right With Dr Boles

Getting It Right With Dr Boles


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Mental illness is a psychological pattern of behavior that is not considered part of normal development within a person's culture. Mental disorders are generally defined by a combination of how a person feels, acts or thinks..  The recognition and understanding of mental health conditions have changed over time and across cultures, however, there are still variations in definition, assessment and classification.

Stigma and discrimination can add to the suffering and disability associated with mental disorders.  Commonly recognized categories include specific phobias, generalized anxiety disorder, social anxiety disorder, panic disorder, agoraphobia, obsessive-compulsive disorder and post-traumatic stress disorder.  Mood disorder involving unusually intense and sustained sadness, melancholia, or despair is known as major depression (also known as clinical depression). Milder but still prolonged depression can be diagnosed as dysthymia and Bipolar disorder.  Psychotic disorders include schizophrenia, and delusional disorder and Schizoaffective. Personality disorders include paranoid antisocial, borderline and histrionic. Personality disorders emerge by adolescence or early adulthood.

Social influences have been found to be important as a cause of mental illness - abuse, neglect, bullying and social stress, and other negative or overwhelming life experiences including employment problems, and socioeconomic inequality. Abnormal functioning of neurotransmitter systems has been implicated in several mental disorders.