Abnormal ans key_ch08

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Abnormal ans key_ch08

  1. 1. Comer, Fundamentals of Abnormal Psychology, 5e — Chapter 8: Student Handout Answer Key 1 Chapter 8 — Suicide Slides, handouts, and answers keys created by Karen Clay Rhines, Ph.D. Handout 2: What Is Suicide? Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in the world 0. It is estimated that 700,000 people die of it each year, with 31,000 suicides per year in the U.S. alone 1. Many more unsuccessfully attempt suicide than actually succeed 2. Such attempts are called “parasuicides” Handout 5: What Is Suicide? Shneidman characterizes four kinds of suicide seekers: 3. Death seekers – intend to end their lives 4. Death initiators – intend to end their lives because they believe that the process of death already is underway 5. Death ignorers – do not believe that their self-inflicted death will mean the end of their existence 6. Death darers – have ambivalent feelings about death and show this in the act itself Handout 6: What Is Suicide? When individuals play indirect, hidden, partial, or unconscious roles in their own deaths, Shneidman classifies them in a category called “subintentional death” 7. True intent is unclear Handout 7: How Is Suicide Studied? Suicide researchers face a major problem: their subjects are no longer alive Researchers use two different strategies to try to overcome this obstacle (with partial success): 8. Retrospective analysis 9. Studying people who survive their suicide attempts
  2. 2. Comer, Fundamentals of Abnormal Psychology, 5e — Chapter 8: Student Handout Answer Key 2 Handout 8: Patterns and Statistics Researchers have been able to gather statistics regarding the social contexts in which such deaths take place 10. Suicide rates vary from country to country, with religious devoutness (not simply affiliation) helping to explain some of the difference Handout 9: Patterns and Statistics The suicide rates of men and women also differ: 11. Women have a higher attempt rate (3x men) 12. Men have a higher completion rate (3x women)  Why? Differing methods have differing lethality Men tend to use more violent methods (shooting, stabbing, or hanging) than women (drug overdose) Guns are used in nearly two-thirds of male suicides in the U.S., compared with 40% of female suicides Handout 15: Mood and Thought Changes Many suicide attempts are preceded by a change in mood 13. These changes may not be enough to warrant a diagnosis of a mental disorder 14. The most common change is a rise in sadness 15. Increases in feelings of anxiety, tension, frustration, anger, or shame are also common 16. Shneidman calls this “psychache,” a feeling of psychological pain that seems intolerable to the person Handout 16: Mood and Thought Changes Suicide attempts may also be preceded by shifts in patterns of thinking 17. Individuals may become preoccupied, lose perspective, and see suicide as their only effective solution 18. They often develop a sense of hopelessness – a pessimistic belief that their present circumstances, problems, or mood will not change 19. Some clinicians believe that a feeling of hopelessness is the single most likely indicator of suicidal intent
  3. 3. Comer, Fundamentals of Abnormal Psychology, 5e — Chapter 8: Student Handout Answer Key 3 Handout 19: Mental Disorders Attempting suicide does not necessarily indicate the presence of a psychological disorder Nevertheless, the majority of all suicide attempters do display such a disorder 20. Those with severe depression, substance use disorders, and/or schizophrenia are at greatest risk Handout 20: Modeling: The Contagion of Suicide It is not unusual for people, particularly teens, to commit suicide after observing or reading about someone who has done so 21. One suicide appears to serve as a model for another 22. Suicides by celebrities, other highly publicized suicides, and suicides by co-workers are particularly common triggers Handout 21: Modeling: The Contagion of Suicide  Suicides with bizarre or unusual aspects often receive intense coverage by the news media, possibly leading to similar suicides  Some clinicians argue that more responsible reporting could reduce this effect Handout 24: Underlying Causes of Suicide: The Sociocultural View Durkhein argues that the probability of suicide is determined by how attached a person is to such social groups as the family, religious institutions, and community 23. The more thoroughly a person belongs, the lower the risk of suicide Based on this premise, he developed several categories of suicide, including egoistic, altruistic, and anomic suicide…
  4. 4. Comer, Fundamentals of Abnormal Psychology, 5e — Chapter 8: Student Handout Answer Key 4 Handout 25: Underlying Causes of Suicide: The Sociocultural View Egoistic suicides are committed by people over whom society has little or no control Altruistic suicides are committed by people who are so well integrated into their society that they intentionally sacrifice their lives for its well-being Anomic suicides are those committed by people whose social environment fails to provide stable structures that support and give meaning to life 24. A change in an individual’s immediate surroundings can also lead to this type of suicide Handout 27: Underlying Causes of Suicide: The Biological View  Recent laboratory research has offered more direct support for a biological model of suicide  Serotonin levels have been found to be low in people who commit suicide  There is a known link between low serotonin and depression  There is evidence, though, of low serotonin activity among suicidal subjects with no history of depression  Serotonin activity may contribute to aggressive behavior Handout 30: Children Suicide attempts by the very young generally are preceded by behavioral patterns such as running away, temper tantrums, social withdrawal, dark fantasies, and marked personality changes Many child suicides appear to be based on a clear understanding of death and on a clear wish to die Handout 32: Adolescents About half of teen suicides have been linked to depression, low self-esteem, and feelings of hopelessness 25. Anger, impulsiveness, poor problem-solving skills, and stress also play a role Some theorists believe that the period of adolescence itself produces a stressful climate in which suicidal actions are more likely
  5. 5. Comer, Fundamentals of Abnormal Psychology, 5e — Chapter 8: Student Handout Answer Key 5 Handout 34: The Elderly In Western society the elderly are more likely to commit suicide than people in any other age group 26. There are many contributory factors: 0. Illness 1. Loss of social support 2. Loss of control over one’s life 3. Loss of social status Handout 35: The Elderly Elderly persons are typically more determined than younger persons in their decision to die, so their success rate is much higher 27. Ratio of attempts to successes is 4:1 28. The suicide rate among the elderly is lower in some minority groups in the U.S.:  Native Americans  African Americans Handout 39: What Is Suicide Prevention? There are hundreds of suicide prevention centers in the U.S. and in England There also are hundreds of suicide hot lines (24-hour-a-day telephone services) 29. Hot lines are predominantly staffed by paraprofessionals – people trained in counseling but without formal degrees

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