American Family - Chapter 9, Understanding Mental Illness
Mental and Emotional Problems
Learning Objectives and
Learning Objective: Students will define
mental disorder, understand the two basic
types of mental disorders, and research
various mental disorders: including what the
disorder is, symptoms, and how it is treated.
Students will also discuss suicide, grief, and
various types of therapies used to treat mental
FCS Standards: 06-12.1.1, 1.A, 1.B, 1.C, 1.D
On a sheet of paper, write as many words
as you can think of that you associate
with the term mental disorder.
Categorize the words as positive or
What might this indicate about attitudes
regarding mental disorders?
What are Mental Disorders?
Mental Disorder: an illness of the mind that
can affect the thoughts, feelings, and behaviors
of a person, preventing him or her from leading
a happy, healthful, and productive life.
Each year 20% of the U.S. population-54
million people-are affected by some form of
Not a lot of these people seek help because of
stigmas: negative label or mark of shame.
Types of Mental Disorders
There are 2 classifications of mental disorders-
organic and functional.
Organic: caused by a physical illness or an injury that
affects the brain.
• Brain tumor, infections.
Functional: psychological cause and does not involve
• Heredity, stress, can be tied to a disturbing event-abuse,
Anxiety disorder: a condition in which real or
imagined fears are difficult to control.
Four main types
1. Phobia: strong, irrational fear of something
specific-high places, spiders, open or public places.
2. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder: a person is
trapped in a pattern of repeated thoughts or
• Obsessive-persistent, recurrent, and unwanted thoughts
that prevent people from attending normal activities.
• Compulsive-repeated, irresistible behavior.
More Anxiety Disorders
3. Panic Disorder: a sudden, unexplained
feeling of terror. Sometimes known as
4. Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder: a
condition that may develop after exposure
to a terrifying event that threatened or
caused physical harm.
Symptoms include: flashbacks, nightmares,
emotional numbness, sleeplessness, guilt, and
Mood disorder: an illness that involves mood
extremes that interfere with everyday living.
Clinical Depression: A disorder in which feelings of
sadness, hopelessness, and despair last for more
than a few weeks and interfere with daily interests
and activities. Results from a chemical imbalance
which can be hereditary, caused by a life event, or
is the symptom of drug and alcohol use.
Bipolar Disorder: Also called manic-depressive
disorder. Involves extreme mood changes, energy
levels, and behavior. The “highs” are called mania
and the “lows” are called depression.VIDEO
Real, treatable, medical diseases such
as anorexia and bulimia.
Eating disorders affect the physical,
emotional/psychological, and social
health of a person.
People can die from eating disorders
due to serious heart conditions and
Conduct Disorder: a pattern of behavior in which the rights of
others or basic social rules are violated.
Examples include lying, theft, aggression, violence, arson, and
More common in males.
An exterior of toughness my hide a low self-esteem.
May also be related to other mental illnesses such as depression,
bipolar, and anxiety.
Without treatment, people with conduct disorders may not learn
how to interact appropriately with others, leading to job loss, family
issues, and incarceration.
A severe mental disorder in which a person loses
contact with reality.
Symptoms include delusions and hallucinations.
Cause may be a combination of genetic factors and
chemical and structural changes in the brain.
Affects both men and women and usually first appears
between the ages of 15-35.
Professional help and medication are necessary to treat
People with personality disorders think and behave
in ways that make it difficult to get along with others.
Some types of personality disorders include.
Antisocial-people may be irritable, aggressive,
impulsive, and violent. Don’t usually show remorse
for their behavior.
Borderline-experience a series of troubled
relationships, may engage in high risk behaviors,
have poor self-esteem, and fear being abandoned.
Passive/aggressive-may be uncooperative, resent
being told what to do, but are reliant on others. Also
show their feelings indirectly.
Types of Therapy
Psychotherapy: ongoing dialogue between a patient and a mental
Behavior Therapy: treatment that focuses on changing unwanted
behaviors through rewards and reinforcement.
Cognitive Therapy: Treatment method designed to identify and correct
Group Therapy: Treating a group of people who have similar
Biomedical Therapy: Use of certain medications to treat or reduce
symptoms of a mental disorder.
Write down three danger signs you
might detect in someone who is
thinking about suicide.
Suicide: The acting of taking one’s own life.
More than 90% of people who kill themselves are suffering from
depression, another mental illness, or are abusing alcohol or
Other risk factors include a history of physical or sexual abuse,
history of previous suicide attempts, or a family history of
suicide attempts or mental illness.
Cluster Suicides: A series of suicides occurring within a short
period of time and involving several people in the same school
Direct statements: “I want to die.”
Indirect statements: “I just want to go to
sleep and not wake up.”
Obsession with death.
Giving away personal belongings.
Dramatic changes in personality,
hygiene, or appearance.
Strategies to Prevent
Although most thoughts of suicide are impulsive and
temporary, the result is very permanent.
When someone talks about suicide, whether serious or
casual, TAKE IT SERIOUSLY!
Get adult assistance right away.
When helping others
Show interest and compassion for them. Listen
closely and be patient and understanding.
Show support and ask questions.
Persuade them to get help. Offer to go with them.
Signs you may need help.
Signs you may need help
School performance, sleep, eating habits,
relationships are affected.
Family and friends are worried about you.
You become involved with drugs/alcohol.
You are more aggressive and violent.
Write a paragraph explaining the
strategies for suicide prevention.
Coping with Grief
Grief response: an individual’s total
response to a major loss.
Coping: dealing successfully with
difficult change in your life.
Mourning: the act of showing sorrow
Death and Grieving
When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced.
Live your life in a manner so that when you die the
world cries and you rejoice.
--Native American Proverb
Strange as it may seem, death is a
part of living. Where did you learn
your ideas or views about death?
• Religious beliefs
• Experiences with death
• Attitude toward life
• Mental health
Coping with Grief
• Grief response: an individual’s total
response to a major loss.
• Coping: dealing successfully with difficult
change in your life.
• Mourning: the act of showing sorrow or
2. Why do most people dislike
talking and thinking about death?
3. What positive and negative
statements could you make
about your life thus far?
4. What are some ways people
deny that death is part of
• Many people avoid using the word death or dead,
• People do not make wills,
• People do not make arrangements for what would
happen if they died, etc.
• In this stage we refuse to believe what has
happened. We try in our mind to tell ourselves
that life is as it was before our loss.
• We can even make believe to an extent by re-
enacting rituals that we used to go through with
our loved one.
• We set an extra plate at the table.
• We expect them to be there when we
• We flash back to memories and
• These are all part of this stage.
• We get angry.
• The anger can manifest itself in many
• We blame others for our loss.
• We become easily agitated having
• We can even become angry at ourselves.
• Release of this anger is essential!
• Bargaining can be with ourselves or if you are religious,
with your god.
• Often we will offer something to try to take away the
reality of what really happened.
• We may try to make a deal, to have our loved one back
as they were before the tragic event occurred.
• It is only human to want things back as they were before.
• Depression is a very likely outcome for all
people that grieve for a loss.
• This is the most difficult of the stages to deal
• There can be a feeling of listness and tiredness.
• Outbursts of tears may occur.
• You may feel like there is no purpose to your life
• You may feel like you are being punished.
• Pleasure and joy may be difficult to express.
• There may even be thoughts of suicide.
• If you at any time in this stage, feel like doing
yourself harm, professional counseling should be
• This is the final stage of grief.
• It happens when you know that you have to go on.
• You can accept your loss and now be able to regain
your energy and goals for the future.
• It may take some time to get to this stage...but you
will get there!
• The mourning process
that occurs prior to
death in cases of
7. Describe some ways that persons
go through a kind of mourning when
they experience losses other than
8. Explain some problems
experienced by family and friends
as they cope with the death or
dying of someone dear to them.
• THE BEREAVED PERSON MAY SHOW
EMOTIONAL AND/OR PHYSICAL
DISORDERS SUCH AS INSOMNIA,
WEIGHT LOSS, HEADACHES, ETC.
10. What are some appropriate
things to say to the bereaved?
• "It's okay to cry"
• "i just wanted you to know i am thinking
11. What should you avoid saying
to the bereaved?
• "Cheer up,“
• "Time will heal all wounds"
• "he/she is better off"
• "it was god's will"
• "call me if you need me"
12. Describe some ways to
• Donation to a favorite charity
• Personal letter
• Phone call
• Gift of money
• Gift of food
• And assistance such as mowing the lawn,
cooking meals, doing laundry, baby sitting,
making phone calls, etc.
13. What is the purpose of a
memorial service, funeral, or
• Without funerals and visitation, the process of
coming to accept the death of a loved one
would, for many, never be complete. Funerals
allow for the open caring, grieving, and
expressing that the human animal seems to
need to reorder life and return to routine living.