Theory of psychodynamic

High School ・Psychology ・APA ・2 Sources

As time goes on, psychologists are discovering more ways of coping with psychiatric cases. The use of psychoanalytical therapy is one of the most obvious methods used in coping with mental illness. The therapy uses and builds on the basic principle of psychodynamics that tries to understand people's actions from childhood through adulthood. During development, the environment starts to condition and train the brain to think and behave in certain ways from the moment a child is born, leading to a behavioral pattern (Collie, 2008). Psychodynamics understand that people's behavior derives from experiences of childhood. The theory recognizes that mental life exists at two distinct levels: the conscious and the inaccessible unconscious level which was proposed by Sigmund Freud (Busch, Singer, & Milrod, 1999). His theory suggests that there exists the id (which is the unconscious) is modulated by the ego which connects it to the external reality of things (Busch, Singer, & Milrod, 1999). The superego is also a part of the unconscious mind and is formed during childhood ages.

Some of the interventions utilized but the theory includes various means. One, the use of dreams helps psychologists to access the unconscious level of the patient. Also, fears can be used to elaborate on the unconscious. The mental ideas of patients are also used as an intervention method which offers information about the mental state of an individual and can be utilized by a psychologist. Fourthly, the psychologists can also evoke emotions in the patients thus conditioning their behaviors. Finally, the use of music has become dominant in the psychodynamic analysis. Psychologists can identify the psychological issues by analyzing the kind of music the patient created with the given musical instruments. 

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Several disorders can be treated through psychoanalytical interventions. Attention deficit disorders or hyperactivity disorders in children have been attributed majorly to psychological influences (Collie, 2008). It is possible to analyze the children using psychoanalytical skills thus eliminating the disorder. Bipolar disorders have also been linked to psychodynamics. Treatment manuals have recommended the use of psychiatric therapy as a way of modeling the emotions of manic individuals. Finally, panic anxieties have a correlation with mental states especially the unconscious realms (Busch, Singer, & Milrod, 1999). Freud’s theory of psychodynamics which recognizes the presence of the unseen unconscious is fundamental the treatment of anxieties and fears exhibited by panic patients.

Below is a case study sample that can be used to show how psychodynamics can be employed:

A 40-year-old man, Mr. D, presents with severe symptoms of panic attacks. The symptoms were focused on the fear of chest pain with a fear of getting a heart attack. The patient also had arm weaknesses thus developing the fear of developing a stroke. To diagnose the disorder, a thorough history was taken which assessed the patients family, his personal life and also occupational engagements. It emerged that Mr. Whitman had suffered humiliation from his father while he was young who referred to him as "Dumbo" even in front of his friends. The name implied that Mr. D was stupid as his father blamed him for the ills in the family. Also, it also emerged that Mr. D's parents threatened to send him away if he expressed his discontent and anger. Eventually, Mr. D began living in rage, humiliation, and fear of abandonment (Busch, Singer, & Milrod, 1999)

 A diagnosis of panic disorder was made. Intervention measures included psychiatrical reviews. The sessions were aimed at helping Mr. D to cope with the atrocities that he went through during his childhood. Drugs prescribed for the panic attacks included antidepressants (SSRIs) such as fluoxetine or a benzodiazepine. Regular psychiatric visits were recommended for assessment and monitoring of progress.

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Busch, F. N., Singer, M. B., & Milrod, B. L. (1999). Theory and Technique in Psychodynamic Treatment of Panic Disorder. Journal of Psychotherapy Practice and Research, 8(3), 234-242.

Collie, A. (2008). Consciously working at the unconscious level: a psychodynamic theory in action in a training environment. Journal of Social Work Practice, 22(3), 345-358.

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