Psychiatric Disorders: Overview, Types, Diagnosis, Causes

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Psychiatric Disorders

Psychiatric disorders encompass a wide range of mental health conditions that can significantly impact an individual’s thoughts, emotions, and behavior.

A psychiatric disorder is an abnormality in how the mind function. Its cause is usually not known, but it’s usually a result of a dysfunction in one or more parts of the brain.

A psychiatric patient has an altered action of presenting his/her actions Such as how they talk, feel acts, thinks or perceive.  Patients diagnosed with this disorder experience behavioural, psychological and emotional abnormalities.

Psychological disorders have a negative impact on a person’s personal, economic and social lifestyle, it can even lead to death. Psychiatric disorders aren’t gender-specific that means it affects both males and females, tribes and cultures.

Major treatments of psychiatric disorders are pharmacotherapy and Psychotherapy. Pharmacotherapy involves the use of drugs such as sedatives and other psychomotor drugs to bring the mental function of the patient back to normal.

Psychotherapy involves talking with a licensed therapist and using drugs as an adjunct.


Psychiatric disorders are classified using the international classification of diseases (ICD-10), 10th revision, 1992 which is also known as the WHO’s classification for all diseases and the diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders (DSM-IV-TR) IV Edition developed by the American psychiatric association (APA) Of psychiatric disorders.

The chapter in ICD-10 In which psychiatric disorders are classified is ‘F’ which classifies psychiatric disorders as mental and behavioural disorders (MBDs) it assigns codes to use a joined alphabet and numeral system.

F00-F009: Organic cases including sympathetic mental disorders

F10-F10: Behavioral and mental disorders secondary to psychoactive substance abuse.

F20-F29: Schizophrenia, schizotypal and delusional disorders

F31-F39: Affective disorders i.e mood disorders.

F40-F48: Neurotic, stress-related and somatoform disorder

F50-F59: Behavioral syndrome i.e Psychosomatic disorders

F60-F69: Disorders of adult behaviour and personality.

F70-F79: Mental retardation

F80-F89: Disorders of psychological development

F90-F98: Behavioural and emotional Disorders


  1. Use of rating scales such as YMRS (young mania rating scale), mini-mental rating scale, Etc.
  2. Appropriate patient interview taking note of the history of present illness, medical history, medication history, family history, social history etc.
  3. Physical examination: inspection, palpation, percussion, auscultation .
  4. Scans, x-rays.


Medically there’s no known cause for psychiatric disorders, but studies suggest that they may have psychological, traumatic and genetic components. There are some events or factors that predispose a person to Psychiatric Disorders. Examples include;


A person may likely develop a psychiatric abnormality if there have been cases of Psychiatric Disorders in the family.


Females are more likely to develop depression and anxiety, while males are more likely to develop Schizophrenia and mania.


People who abuse drugs like Tobacco, cocaine, and other hard drugs are likely to develop a psychiatric disorder due to excessive neuronal stimulation.


Some drugs have been known to induce Psychiatric Disorders upon their usage, this is usually a side effect and it goes when the drugs are discontinued, examples include amphetamine, ketamine, corticosteroids etc.

Some medical conditions also can trigger Psychiatric disorder. Medical conditions such as pregnancy, improper brain development, nutritional deficiency, hyponatremia, hypomagnesemia, some viral and bacterial infections, the fetal alcohol syndrome can also make a baby come down with Psychiatric Disorders.


Environmental factors such as war, increased crime and violence rate, famine etc can trigger Psychiatric Disorders.


Loss of a loved one, heartbreak, divorce, failure, stress etc can trigger Psychiatric Disorders.


  1. Limiting or reducing symptoms.
  2. Return of the patient to society, so that the patient can resume normal activities.
  3. Treating the patient to a point that is satisfactory to the patient and family members.
  4. Reduction of drug induces adverse effects and side effects.
  5. Reduction/stopping of recurrence.


There are three major symptoms of Psychiatric Disorders. They are;

  1. Hallucinations
  2. Delusions.
  3. Catatonia.


Hallucinations are altered perceptions. Hallucinations basically represent one or more of the five senses in how they perceive things. In hallucination, a patient seems to be responding to external stimuli which aren’t there.

For example, a patient might feel different hands are touching him (sense of touch) or probably he’s hearing voices talking to him, or even smelling an odour that isn’t naturally present or tasting something that isn’t there. This basically describes hallucinations.


Delusions are false reality. A patient is deluded when he thinks he’s someone else. For example, a patient wakes up and says he’s the president of America when he’s just a normal citizen. It is a false belief that a person holds on to without real evidence. It may be difficult to change even with factual evidence.


Catatonia, the patient’s experience if reality is impaired. The patient’s actions are bizarre and may refuse to move or interact with his/her immediate environment. It may involve a high preoccupation of the mind, and the patient may not respond to sights, sounds or events, because the patient seems focused on another thing entirely.

Other symptoms include

  1. Anorexia: the patient doesn’t eat as usual
  2. Akathisia: Muscular restlessness
  3. INSOMNIA/HYPERSOMNIA: Reduced or increased sleeping duration.
  4. Anxiety
  5. Disorientation: The patient is usually disorganized.
  6. Speech incoherence
  7. Cognition and thought Disorders.: The patient doesn’t think properly.


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Hello readers, you are welcome to your info connect. My name is Emmanuel, I am a graduate Mechanical Engineer, a blogger, and Digital Marketer. I share educational and career information and content to enable viewers who are aiming for success to attain it in their various fields. I hope you enjoy your tour here.

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