Psychodynamic Explanation for Schizophrenia

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  • Created by: GracieFM
  • Created on: 20-03-14 10:51
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  • Psychodynamic Explanation for Schizophrenia
    • Schizophrenogenic Mother
      • Children are at high risk of developing schizophrenia if...
        • Mother is overprotective towards them
        • They are in a family characterised as having high emotional tension
        • They are in a family characterised as being secretive
        • Where the mother is cold and domineering in her attitude
        • Mother rejects attempts by the child to respond to the demands
        • Mixed messages from the mother cause the child to become confused
          • The confusion and inability to understand how to behave in certain situations stems from these early experiences
        • Mothers are characterised as schizophrenogenic
      • All children go through stages of development where they are dominated by feelings of persecution and omnipotence
        • A poor relation between the child and primary care giver in infancy can prevent the child from outgoing these belifes
        • Therefore they are vulnerable to schizophrenia in later life as they respond to stress with these feelings
    • Evaluation of Schizophrenogenic Mother
      • The credibility of this explanation has been dented by the strong evidence of a biological element fround by using adoption studies
      • It is likely if parenting has a role to play that fathers are equally likely to be an influence on the development of the disorder
      • It's more likely that a child who is showing difficult behaviour tha will lead to schizophrenia is the cause of parental behaviour rather than the other way round.
      • Beels (1974)
        • Parents of schizophrenic children showed better reasoning skills when interviewed without their children present
      • Now widely discredited theory but has caused much damage to families and is still occasionally prepetuated today
    • Evidence
      • Litz et al (1965)
        • Found that 45/50 p'pants had a disturbed family
        • 60% had one or both parents with serious personality disorders
        • Parental marriages characterised as as either constant discord or one dominant and one submissive
        • Fathers were typically passive
        • Mothers were typically cold and dominant
      • Read
        • Early family relations are important for explaining schizo
        • Negative - only says that early experiences impact on mental health, so doesn't support Bion or Fromm-Richman
      • Alanen's Integrated Psychodynamic Theory
        • Based in large scale of families with schizo and clinical case studies
        • 5 points to theory of how environment could lead to schizo:
          • 1. Whole family important not just primary care giver - whole family relationship important
          • 2. Parents personality and relationship with child important to if vulnerable to schizo
          • 3. A family where one person is more dominant then children more likely to develop schizo
          • 4. Families who encourage dependance are more likely to develop schizo
          • 5. Genes determine tempermant of children - if parents are angry child is most likely to be angry. Child has to be genetically vulnerable
        • Genetically vulnerable + bad family relationship = schizophrenia
      • Tienai (1992)
        • Followed 200 Finnish children who were adopted at birth or shortly after
        • Their mothers were schizophrenic
        • 10% of children developed schizophrenia
        • Children with schizo were from dysfuntional families
      • Wahlberg (1997)
        • Compared 56 adoptees from mothers with schizo to control group of 96 children from parents without mental health problems
        • Neither a schizo mother nor an abusive family resulted in schizo
        • If a child had bother then they were more liklely to have schizo


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