Psychological explanations of Anorexia

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  • Created by: EClou
  • Created on: 15-02-16 22:20

AO1

First Explanation AO1:

  • Behaviourist  - AN = learnt  - maladaptive
  • Op Conditioning - learnt from consequences of actions - if rewarded (pos reinf.)  then beh = more freq. i.e. diets/weight loss = praise= red. anxiety= positive + tf incr. restrictive til AN
  • SLT - learn from observing results of others beh - imitate - vicarious reinf. e.g. models rewarded for thinness w/ money/fame/attention -- imitate role models -- AN 
  • assumes media = major source of influence

Second Explanation AO1:

  • Psychodynamic  - Hilde Bruch (1973) AN due to ineffective parenting doesnt respond to internal needs in early childhood
  • e.g. anxious child is fed and hungry child is cuddled 
  • adolescent desires more personal autonomy - cant exert indep. + tf take excessive control over body to overcome helplessness - AN
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AO2

Behaviorist AO2:

  • SGT- Becker (1999) - interviewed 6 Fijian girls before western TV intorduced and 65 after - no. that admitted to vomiting to control weight = 3-15% 
  •       - exposure to thinness from media = more disordered eating - supports SLT - Fijian obseverd thin women rewarded + imitated beh. - western media says thin = beautiful
  •       - BUT research not spec into AN/self-report techniques used + it could be that the second group just happened to have more ps that vomited to control weight tf Becker only = partial support

Pyschodynamic AO2:

  • SGT - Steiner et al (1991) - parents of AN teens try to define childs needs rather than vv
  • SGT - Bruch (1973) parents try to 'anticipate' kids's needs b4 letting them feel hungry
  • SGT - Button + Warren (2001) ppl with AN over-rely on others opinions + feel lack of control 
  • WKN - speculative + unfalsifiable  - not scientific - psuedoscientific  - research from case studies  - low IV and Pop Val.
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AO3 IDA

AO3:

  • some evidence points to bio. cause - nature-nurture -- Holland et al (1988) higher concordance for AN in MZ twins (56%) than DZ (5%) - AN genetic/inheritable - unrelated to 'media effects' + 'learned beh'
  •     - but never 100% concordance -- cant only be biolog. + tf must be some psych involved 
  • change in prevalence of AN in last 30yrs - cant be explaned by ev/bio - models got thinner+media more intrusive
  •     - we are all exposed to media images but not everyone has AN
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