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The DSM-5 also provides information about comorbidity    ; the co-occurrence of two disorders. For example, the DSM-5 mentions that 41% of people with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) also meet the diagnostic criteria for major depressive disorder ( [link] ). Drug use is highly comorbid with other mental illnesses; 6 out of 10 people who have a substance use disorder also suffer from another form of mental illness (National Institute on Drug Abuse [NIDA], 2007).

A Venn-diagram shows two overlapping circles. One circle is titled “Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder” and the other is titled “Major Depressive Disorder.” The area in which these two circles overlap includes forty-one percent of each circle. This area is titled “Comorbidity 41%.”
Obsessive-compulsive disorder and major depressive disorder frequently occur in the same person.

The DSM has changed considerably in the half-century since it was originally published. The first two editions of the DSM, for example, listed homosexuality as a disorder; however, in 1973, the APA voted to remove it from the manual (Silverstein, 2009). Additionally, beginning with the DSM-III in 1980, mental disorders have been described in much greater detail, and the number of diagnosable conditions has grown steadily, as has the size of the manual itself. DSM-I included 106 diagnoses and was 130 total pages, whereas DSM-III included more than 2 times as many diagnoses (265) and was nearly seven times its size (886 total pages) (Mayes&Horowitz, 2005). Although DSM-5 is longer than DSM-IV, the volume includes only 237 disorders, a decrease from the 297 disorders that were listed in DSM-IV. The latest edition, DSM-5, includes revisions in the organization and naming of categories and in the diagnostic criteria for various disorders (Regier, Kuhl,&Kupfer, 2012), while emphasizing careful consideration of the importance of gender and cultural difference in the expression of various symptoms (Fisher, 2010).

Some believe that establishing new diagnoses might overpathologize the human condition by turning common human problems into mental illnesses (The Associated Press, 2013). Indeed, the finding that nearly half of all Americans will meet the criteria for a DSM disorder at some point in their life (Kessler et al., 2005) likely fuels much of this skepticism. The DSM-5 is also criticized on the grounds that its diagnostic criteria have been loosened, thereby threatening to “turn our current diagnostic inflation into diagnostic hyperinflation” (Frances, 2012, para. 22). For example, DSM-IV specified that the symptoms of major depressive disorder must not be attributable to normal bereavement (loss of a loved one). The DSM-5, however, has removed this bereavement exclusion, essentially meaning that grief and sadness after a loved one’s death can constitute major depressive disorder.

The international classification of diseases

A second classification system, the International Classification of Diseases (ICD)    , is also widely recognized. Published by the World Health Organization (WHO), the ICD was developed in Europe shortly after World War II and, like the DSM, has been revised several times. The categories of psychological disorders in both the DSM and ICD are similar, as are the criteria for specific disorders; however, some differences exist. Although the ICD is used for clinical purposes, this tool is also used to examine the general health of populations and to monitor the prevalence of diseases and other health problems internationally (WHO, 2013). The ICD is in its 10th edition (ICD-10); however, efforts are now underway to develop a new edition (ICD-11) that, in conjunction with the changes in DSM-5, will help harmonize the two classification systems as much as possible (APA, 2013).

A study that compared the use of the two classification systems found that worldwide the ICD is more frequently used for clinical diagnosis, whereas the DSM is more valued for research (Mezzich, 2002). Most research findings concerning the etiology and treatment of psychological disorders are based on criteria set forth in the DSM (Oltmanns&Castonguay, 2013). The DSM also includes more explicit disorder criteria, along with an extensive and helpful explanatory text (Regier et al., 2012). The DSM is the classification system of choice among U.S. mental health professionals, and this chapter is based on the DSM paradigm.

The compassionate view of psychological disorders

As these disorders are outlined, please bear two things in mind. First, remember that psychological disorders represent extremes of inner experience and behavior. If, while reading about these disorders, you feel that these descriptions begin to personally characterize you, do not worry—this moment of enlightenment probably means nothing more than you are normal. Each of us experiences episodes of sadness, anxiety, and preoccupation with certain thoughts—times when we do not quite feel ourselves. These episodes should not be considered problematic unless the accompanying thoughts and behaviors become extreme and have a disruptive effect on one’s life. Second, understand that people with psychological disorders are far more than just embodiments of their disorders. We do not use terms such as schizophrenics, depressives, or phobics because they are labels that objectify people who suffer from these conditions, thus promoting biased and disparaging assumptions about them. It is important to remember that a psychological disorder is not what a person is ; it is something that a person has —through no fault of his or her own. As is the case with cancer or diabetes, those with psychological disorders suffer debilitating, often painful conditions that are not of their own choosing. These individuals deserve to be viewed and treated with compassion, understanding, and dignity.


The diagnosis and classification of psychological disorders is essential in studying and treating psychopathology. The classification system used by most U.S. professionals is the DSM-5. The first edition of the DSM was published in 1952, and has undergone numerous revisions. The 5th and most recent edition, the DSM-5, was published in 2013. The diagnostic manual includes a total of 237 specific diagnosable disorders, each described in detail, including its symptoms, prevalence, risk factors, and comorbidity. Over time, the number of diagnosable conditions listed in the DSM has grown steadily, prompting criticism from some. Nevertheless, the diagnostic criteria in the DSM are more explicit than that of any other system, which makes the DSM system highly desirable for both clinical diagnosis and research.

Questions & Answers

Hello guys good morning
Tanam Reply
gud mornin
Good evening, I hope everyone is having a great day! :)
Fine namira
What makes people with sickle cell not fat does the illness damage their body?
Normally, RBCs are shaped like discs, which gives them the flexibility to travel through even the smallest blood vessels. However, with this disease, the RBCs have an abnormal crescent shape resembling a sickle. This makes them sticky and rigid and prone to getting trapped in small vessels
this leads to blood not reaching much to parts, leading to anaemia. and hence them not being able to gain any weight
What made psychology be studied under philosophy
fatima Reply
..Cos everything begins with the love of Wisdom
first ,explain what is psychology and philosophy .Then you state and explain the various reasons for which psychology was studied under philosophy.
Then you give a suitable conclusion.
please can anyone help me with different between Cognitive and Personality structure
cognitive deals with mind and metal while personality deals with physical actions
cognitive is nothing but our way of processing the information....were as personality is totally different ....that it relates to our environment....that means how we behave according to our circumstances...
now are u clear
what is psychology
Beatriz Reply
Psychology is the study of soul
scientific study of mind and behavior
a real life example of humanistic model
Alexsus Reply
what is a linear relationship
Happy Reply
directly related. like if one factor changes, so will the other
explain the process of visua sensation
David Reply
Sensation is defined as the stimulation of sense organs Visual sensation is a physiological process which means that it is the same for everyone. We absorb energy such as electro magnetic energy (light) or sound waves by sensory organs such as eyes.
what is selective attention?
Happy what did you say visual sensation is ?
please make your explanation clear for us
you mean you experience sensation by what you see..
I thought it was by what your five senses interpreted
visual has to do with the eyes alone
sensory has to do with all the sense organs ranging from the eyes,nose, skin,tongue and ear
selective attention is focusing on a particular stimulus out of myriads of stimuli
visual sensation in simple terms is standing from far it seems to assume that the trees are emerged but when you get they totally separated
seeing the trees been emerged is the visual sensation.That is my understanding, you can also find out
a woman watch me all time why
Janak Reply
because it is hard to test alot of things in it empiricaly
Ahmed Reply
good Morning, I want someone to give me a lecture on levels of conscious
Tebukoza Reply
why is psyche represented as a butterfly?
Gabriella Reply
Psyche's mythological imagery in ancient art is represented with butterfly wings, amply depicted in pottery as well. ... The metamorphosis of the butterfly inspired many to use butterflies as a symbol of the soul's exit from the body. Thus, the myth of Psyche concomitantly signifies soul and butterf
ok thanks
On what basis do people argue that genes do not set limits on a person's potential?
Shruti Reply
The Nature-Nature Thingy
Nature vs nurture
well, going by Polygenic Hypothesis formulated in a genome-wide association study (GWAS), each (even all) gene(s) affects every complex trait. from physical to even one's mental growth (though it's still debatable).
Like you know, the selfish gene, like genes passed on to generation after generation​; and if a person with a certain gene arrangement pattern meets someone remotely resembling even a part of it, he/she'll automatically behave selflessly towards the other person.
somewhat linking to the idea of soulmates, and Plato's idea of conjoint men and women who were split by God and hence strive to become one yet again. (I know I'm wandering away from psychology here)
But IQ is affected by both genes and environment.
"Other studies at the world-leading Minnesota Center for Twin and Family Research suggest that many of our traits are more than 50% inherited, including obedience to authority, vulnerability to stress, and risk-seeking. "
as for effect of the environment, study of epigenetics shows that how many inherited traits only get “switched on” in certain environments.
BUT, "Various options are pencilled in by our genes, and our life experiences determine which get inked." That is, what gets 'unlocked' depends on our experience and environment factor.
like determining if a person will be introvert or extrovert, by just observing his parents is not enough. though it does contribute a major part.
so, I'd like to go against your question (somewhat) and say, genes do set limitations, but what some genes only 'unlock' under certain circumstances and environment, so they don't limit it totally
hope it helped. @ me (CK) if any doubts or queries remain
Hi, I have completed my Engineering with MBA in HR, and I want to pursue my career in field related to psychology. Is it possible to study psychology and pursue my dream.
Aparnaa Reply
You can but you'll have to start from FYBA again
Oh! hmm thank you.
Look into getting a doctorate in industrial/organizational psychology. There are myriad fields within psychology; which one are you pursuing?
something like counselling!
if you want to be a licensed professional counselor, you need to get a master of arts degree in counseling. It takes about two years to complete. you will have a practicum/internship as well within your coursework. Before you apply for a degree, find out your states requirements about licensure.
Hmm i will check the details and thank you so much!
am a a student clinical officer
David Reply
What is the hardest subject/something-you-have-to-learn in a psychology degree?
Emiko Reply
The hardest subject is your mind ..Kokoro
well, obviously?
Depends on what your interest is. Some ppl find Industrial/Organisational Psych difficult or some find Cognitive Psychology difficult and think they are very dry subjects, but I enjoy learning them. But counseling/ Abnormal Psychology was more difficult for me because you gotta learn stuff by heart.
I'm interested in Personality Psychology. What so I need to learn in that to do well in that area?
clinical psychology is outstanding i must say
clinical psychology is outstanding i must say
What level of Psychology statistics have you guys done so far?
i hv completed MA in clinical
@Maria, I've learnt just the basic Statistics. t test, ANOVA ( F test), Z test and chi square
@Emiko tell which grade are you in currently so I can suggest what to study accordingly.
a women always look me all day why
she is cur
curios about you*
or it's just in your mind @janak, do keep both the possibilities in mind
I wanna welcome everyone to my wedding
Boy Reply
psychological marriage
let's get it
so what's the first part you wish to dive in?

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Source:  OpenStax, Psychology. OpenStax CNX. Feb 03, 2015 Download for free at https://legacy.cnx.org/content/col11629/1.5
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