University of Phoenix
September 9, 2012
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (also known and DSM IV-TR) is a book which many psychologists, social workers, and psychiatrists reference, along with many other professionals in the health care field and the social service field. “The stated purpose of the DSM is threefold: to provide "a helpful guide to clinical practice"; "to facilitate research and improve communication among clinicians and researchers"; and to serve as "an educational tool for teaching psychopathology”’ (“Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders”, n.d.). Many psychiatric diagnoses are categorized by this book. The DSM IV-TR is published by the American Psychiatric Association. The DSM IV-TR covers all mental health disorders for both children and adults. “The DSM-IV-TR provides a classification of mental disorders, criteria sets to guide the process of differential diagnosis, and numerical codes for each disorder to facilitate medical record keeping” (“Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders”, n.d.). Anxiety is a unsettling feeling that on person may experience; they may experience “unpleasant emotions characterized by a general sense of danger, dread, and physiological arousal” (Hansell & Damour, 2008, p. 115). A person’s mood will fluctuate in different situations or events. These moods have different components to them including cognitive, emotional, physical, and motivational. When moods like this very powerful and continue for a long period of time then they may be categorized as disorders. The DSM IV-TR recognizes six different anxiety disorders. These anxiety disorders are then classified as generalized anxiety disorder (GAD), PD or panic disorder, phobias, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), PTSD or posttraumatic stress disorder, and acute stress disorder (ASD). GAD “is a pattern of constant worry and anxiety over many different activities and events” (“PubMed Health”, 2012). In GAD the “main symptom is the almost constant presence of worry or tension” (“PubMed Health”, 2012). Panic disorder is the type of anxiety in which a person may have repeated attacks of intense fear that something bad will happen. These fears of something bad will happen cause panic attacks and in turn lead to more panic attacks. “Obsessive-compulsive disorder is an anxiety disorder in which people have unwanted and repeated thoughts, feelings, ideas, sensations (obsessions), or behaviors that make them feel driven to do something (compulsions)” (“PubMed Health”, 2012). PTSD and ASD include a variety of anxiety symptoms occurring in the event of traumatic experiences. Classifications for mood disorders highlight historical relativism. Characteristics of mood disorders include motivational, emotional, cognitive, and physical component. Somatoform disorders have physical symptoms caused by physiological factors. “Somatoform disorders represent a group of disorders characterized by physical symptoms suggesting a medical disorder. However, somatoform disorders represent a psychiatric condition because the physical symptoms present in the disorder cannot be fully explained by a medical disorder, substance use, or another mental disorder” (Yates, n.d.). The symptoms of somatoform disorders rest in the appearance of physical symptoms that are not medically related.