Contemporary Psychological Interventions and Pharmacology

Posted: August 14th, 2013

Contemporary Psychological Interventions and Pharmacology



Contemporary Psychological Interventions and Pharmacology

1.         What role do you think technology will play in the future of psychotherapy?

The use of technology in conducting psychotherapy is evident even in the contemporary era. In these modern times, psychotherapists take advantage of simple technological advancements in order to carry out their routine therapeutic functions on patients. However, it is evident that a considerable number of psychotherapists do not agree with using technology in conducting therapeutic treatment. In such instances, distress may occur from the misgiving that technology may actually hamper the progression of a therapeutic relationship or may even amplify the possibility that clients will conclude prematurely. As such, since the association between the psychotherapist and the client constantly forecasts therapeutic gains, it is fathomable that psychotherapists would exert caution on introducing facets.

Nevertheless, various arrays of therapy utilize simple technology in treating clients. In behavior therapy, mechanical devices are important for recording mannerisms. Other devices such as the Self-Injurious Behavior Inhibiting System also gain employment in psychotherapy (Spiegler & Guevremont, 2009). Regardless, exploitation of technology in behavior therapy is diminutive based on the assertion that technology complicates procedures, which further hinders the operation of therapeutic procedures. However, this does not negate the use of future technology in psychotherapy through various ways. For instance, clients can utilize computers or mobile phones to transfer data to their therapist via e-mail or telephone. Overall, the role of future technology focuses on enhancement of therapies that are cost-effective.

2.         How has research on the brain contributed to contemporary psychotherapies?

Indeed, the advancements in neuroscience with respect to brain research provide considerable contribution to the conduction of contemporary psychotherapies. For a long time, most researchers agree that the brain assumed a static status and as such, could not contribute to the advances in psychotherapy. Nevertheless, the technological progress illustrated in significant processes of brain imaging depict that psychological experiences shape and reshape the brain (Cozolino, 2010). Significant research on the brain points out that brain formation is inseparable to an individual’s surroundings and genealogy. For instance, research discovered that neuroplasticity relates to therapeutic change.

Indeed, it is evident that genetics do not constitute the only factors that determine the development and demarcation of the brain. As such, brain formation does not conclude in untimely childhood. This is because of re-planning of cortical networks in accordance with personal experience. As such, brain research depicts that psychotherapy should allow for reconstruction of neural networks, especially in the regions responsible for emotional stimuli and dispositions. In addition, the research on brain functioning necessitates the deduction of models of neurobiology. These models integrated in therapeutic treatments actually enhance the framework of psychotherapy intercessions. For instance, these models,  if employed in assessing mental disorders before carrying out psychotherapy can be useful in illustrating biological substrates innate within mental disorders in order to determine the type of treatments and psychotherapy suitable.

3.         What have you come to understand are the neurological bases for Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and what are the therapeutic benefits and unwanted side effects of CNS stimulants?

Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a disorder that initially materializes within childhood. The disorder is an enduring disability that constitutes a pattern of progressively improper inattentiveness, restlessness in motor activities as well as impulsivity. Irrespective of the research that deduces ADHD as a heritable disease, it is also evident that complications in the neurological system of the affected lead to conception of the disorder. As such, the disorder is a manifold pathophysiological unit that embodies a convoluted etiology. Persons suffering from ADHD illustrate complexities in numerous cognitive and attention functions such as problem resolution, attentiveness, maintained alertness, operating memory, orienting, response reticence and planning. Other areas include affective components such as stimulus and avoidance of delay. Essentially, complexities in motor activities such as difficulties in sensory motor synchronization, pitiable handwriting and ineptness relate to disorders within the function and framework of the cerebellum and ganglia. Nevertheless, initial research on the neurological basis of the disorder pointed out that the occurrence of restless movements among ADHD children derived from activity within the bilateral cortical system as well as insufficient transcallosal interhemispheric reticence. In addition, the most compounding neurological basis for ADHD rests on the dysfunction of the frontal lobe based on the neurotherapy results that actually encourage the normalization of brainwave retorts to stimuli among ADHD victims.

Overtime, Central Nervous Stimulants (CNS) stimulants are the preferred pharmacological treatments towards ADHD. This is because stimulants inhibit the reuptake of dopamine, which is one of the biological substrates attributed to the conception and facilitation of ADHD. The use of CNS stimulants arose from the revelation that amphetamines actually endorsed the enhanced discharge of dopamine. The therapeutic benefits stemming from the use of CNS stimulants depend on the categorization of the stimulants in terms of duration and onset. As such, most of these stimulants possess a sensible fast onset, illustrated by the reduction of symptoms. Furthermore, the rapid onset of the stimulant action indicates the symptoms lessening in a period of between thirty and forty-five minutes after consumption. Additionally, the duration of the stimulant shortens in the event of consumption. Usually, after ingestion of the CNS stimulants, the duration of the stimulant ranges between four and twelve hours. Furthermore, CNS stimulants enhance attention, lessen restlessness and augment the motor coordination among ADHD patients. However, the stimulants also lead to insomnia, anorexia, occasional stomachaches, placid dysphoria, lethargy and blighted concentration (Preston, O’Neal & Talaga, 2010).

4.         What have you come to understand are the neurological bases for anxiety disorders and what are the therapeutic benefits and unwanted side effects of sedative/hypnotic medications?

Anxiety disorders constitute a widespread, assorted collection of psychiatric complexities. Typically, anxiety disorders possess multiple etiologies evident in some cases of anxiety disorders that seem to be explicitly associative to biochemical disorders whereas other cases of the disorder seem to arise from genetics. Ten syndromes innate of anxiety disorder form the neurological basis for the abnormality. These syndromes include Generated Anxiety Disorder (GAD), Specific Phobias, Social Anxiety Disorder, and Anxiety from Psychological Stress, Agoraphobia, Medical Anxiety Disorder, Substance Anxiety Disorder, and Anxiety secondary to a basic mental abnormality, Neurotic anxiety and Panic disorder. As such, the main neurological basis for anxiety disorder is the lack of stressors. Usually, persons suffering from these ten syndromes innate within the context of anxiety disorders lack stressors. Additionally, another neurological basis towards anxiety disorder involves the Amygdala region. The amygdala region possesses a collection of neurons that are visible deeply within the temporal lobe of the brain. The amygdala region takes a basic role in the processing of emotions. Additionally, the region constitutes a section of the Limbic system. Among human beings and animals, this subcortical brain framework connects to both pleasure and rejoinders of fear.

Alternately, among human beings, conditions such as depression, stress abnormalities such as Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), autism and anxiety disorders associate with the disruptive operation of the amygdala region based on developmental issues, imbalance among neurotransmitters and damage. In addition, the neurobiological framework and the operation underpinning anxiety in premature states acquire a considerable role in the states of intense anxiety in adult life. Usually, the most desired medication for persons suffering from anxiety disorders comprises sedative-hypnotics medications. Sedatives and hypnotics are anti-anxiety treatments. Sedatives or tranquilizers lessen irritability. Hypnotics also utilized as anti-anxiety medications induce sleep and thus negate the effect of anxiety disorders in propelling insomnia. As such, sedative-hypnotics possess advantages for patients of anxiety disorders. For instance, sedative-hypnotics such as serotonergic antidepressants and benzodiazepines induce sleep and enable a patient to experience calmness. In addition, serotonergic antidepressants as sedatives inhibit the release of serotonin, which is responsible for emotions among human beings. Furthermore, the antidepressants inhibit cellular operation in the amygdala and reduce emotional motivation and transmission of emotional stimuli (Preston, O’Neal & Talaga, 2010). However, the consistent use of sedative/hypnotic medication leads to the dependence on the medications among persons suffering from anxiety disorders and eventually, withdrawal from such medications only increases anxiety symptoms.

5.         What have you come to understand are the neurobiological bases for schizophrenia and what are the therapeutic benefits and unwanted side effects of antipsychotic medications?

Schizophrenia constitutes a mental abnormality illustrated by a collapse of thought procedures and by an insufficiency of archetypal emotional rejoinders. The most evident symptoms comprise obsessed or peculiar delusions, acoustic hallucinations, or disordered speech and thoughts. In addition, considerable dysfunction in social or occupational arenas accompanies victims of schizophrenia. Usually, the transmitting basis for the disorder stems from the integration of genes and the environment. Regarding genetics, individuals suffering from a transitory psychosis and with a hereditary genealogy of schizophrenia possess greater risks of suffering from Schizophrenia after a year. Nevertheless, it is important to consider the neurological basis for Schizophrenia. Indeed, the disorder possesses various positive, affective and cognitive signs. Since all these signs are uncommon in the whole populace, it is evident that the disorder is a neurological disorder. As such, Schizophrenia arises partially from disequilibrium of neurotransmitters within the brain. These neurotransmitters support communication amid the nerves and other complementary nerves as well as tissues and organs. Furthermore, excessive quantities of dopamine cause the disorder. In addition, other neurotransmitters such as serotonin, acetylcholine and glutamate facilitate the progression of schizophrenia. In addition, the neural structure of the brain contributes significantly to the development of the disorder. As such, the neurological basis for the abnormality may incorporate structural disorders within the limbic system, posterior brain and forefront brain. Lessened density in the brain’s gray matter outlines the probability of the conception of symptoms such as disordered dialogue and thought as well as behavior.

Additionally, structural disorders within the amygdala, cerebellum as well as the hypothalamus and hippocampus may also contribute to the development of schizophrenia. Nevertheless, various medications for schizophrenia do not produce considerable results such as antipsychotic medications. Antipsychotic medications are effectual in the treatment of schizophrenia as well as other mental disorders such as delirium, and other delusion-related abnormalities. This is because these medications treat most psychotic symptoms irrespective of the abnormality. However, in the treatment of all psychotic symptoms, antipsychotic medications possess negative side effects. Antipsychotic medications inhibit acetylcholine receptors and as such affect the Parasympathetic Nervous System (Preston, O’Neal & Talaga, 2010). This leads to the occurrence of dry membranes, specifically within the eyes and the mouth, distorted vision, menstrual problems among women, dizziness in the event of modifying positions, drowsiness, and rashes on the skin, sun sensitivity and fast heartbeats. Occasionally, antipsychotic medications will lead to considerable weight increase and deviations in metabolism.















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