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Symptoms & Treatments of Mental Disorders

Symptoms & Treatments of Mental Disorders

Mental disorders are characterized by problems that people experience with their mind (thoughts) and their mood (feelings). They are not well understood in terms of their causes, but the symptoms of mental illness are scientifically valid and well known. Treatment — usually involving both psychotherapy and medication — for most types of mental illness and mental health concerns is readily available and, eventually, effective for most people.

The diagnostic criteria for mental disorders (also known as “mental illness”) are composed of symptom checklists that primarily are focused on a person’s behaviors and thoughts. These lists of symptoms have been summarized from current diagnostic criteria commonly used in the United States by mental health professionals (the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition). We’ve divided the disorders into three broad categories below: adult, childhood, and personality disorders; some disorders may fall under more than one category.

These disorder lists are in the process of being updated to reflect the changes from the latest edition of the diagnosis manual, the DSM-5.

Please keep in mind that only an experienced mental health professional can make an actual diagnosis.

Learn more: About the DSM-5 or Looking for a DSM Code?

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Adult Mental Disorders

Common Disorders

 

Dissociative Disorders

 

Feeding & Eating Disorders

 

Sexual & Paraphilic Disorders

 

Sleep & Wake Disorders

 

Childhood Mental Disorders

Childhood disorders, often labeled as developmental disorders or learning disorders, most often occur and are diagnosed when the child is of school-age. Although some adults may also relate to some of the symptoms of these disorders, typically the disorder’s symptoms need to have first appeared at some point in the person’s childhood.

 

Personality Disorders

These disorders typically aren’t diagnosed until an individual is a young adult, often not until their 20’s or even 30’s. Most individuals with personality disorders lead pretty normal lives and often only seek psychotherapeutic treatment during times of increased stress or social demands. Most people can relate to some or all of the personality traits listed; the difference is that it does not affect most people’s daily functioning to the same degree it might someone diagnosed with one of these disorders. Personality disorders tend to be an intergral part of a person, and therefore, are difficult to treat or “cure.” Learn more about personality disorders and personality traits

 

Other Mental Disorders & Concerns

Disclaimers & Use Restrictions:

This listing is for personal use in education or research only. This listing is not meant to replace professional advice, diagnosis, or care from a licensed mental health practioner; its sole intent is for patient education. If you believe you may be suffering from one of these disorders, please consult a mental health professional. The diagnostic criteria for mental disorders are summarized from the American Psychiatric Association’s 2013 Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5).


John M. Grohol, Psy.D.

Dr. John Grohol is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of Psych Central. He is a psychologist, author, researcher, and expert in mental health online, and has been writing about online behavior, mental health and psychology issues since 1995. Dr. Grohol has a Master's degree and doctorate in clinical psychology from Nova Southeastern University. Dr. Grohol sits on the editorial board of the journal Computers in Human Behavior and is a founding board member of the Society for Participatory Medicine. You can learn more about Dr. John Grohol here.

APA Reference
Grohol, J. (2019). Symptoms & Treatments of Mental Disorders. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 13, 2019, from https://psychcentral.com/disorders/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 18 Jul 2019
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 18 Jul 2019
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.