Psychology is a science that is constantly evolving and growing, and that is especially true when the concentration of study is abnormal psychology. There are so many mysteries within abnormal psychology that there are constantly progressing theories. Two of the more familiar theories are the biochemical theory and Freud’s psychoanalytic theory. Today we will be exploring these two theories, how they compare and how each has contributed to the field of psychology.
The biochemical theory states that the “brain requires a number of chemicals in order to work efficiently and effectively” (Nolen-Hoeksema, 2014, p.29). The chemicals the brain needs to function correctly are partially comprised of neurotransmitters and hormones. The concept behind the biochemical theory is that somewhere along the line, the necessary chemicals were either overproduced, under produced, or the receptors of chemicals are non-responsive. When considering the neurotransmitter concept, it’s theorized that the amount of neurotransmitters one has is linked with psychological abnormalities (Nolen-Hoeksema, 2014, p.29). With the hormonal concept, it’s believed that when hormones carry messages to the body it can affect mood, energy, and behavior. Over or under production of hormones can affect a person and cause abnormalities. This theory has been developed since the times of the Greeks and does not have one recognized founder.
The other theory we will be looking at will be Freud’s psychoanalytic theory. This theory states that “the nurturance a child receives from his or her early caregivers strongly influences personality development (Nolen-Hoeksema, 2014, p.42). This theory is controversial because ac...
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.... This form of therapy deals mostly with consciousness and many people think that Freud had insight into this before his time.
Biochemical theories have contributed in a more direct way. With the developments in biological understanding of mental illness, we are able to develop more and more medications to assist people with chemical imbalances. Still, we are unsure about exact processes in the brain and more research has to be done (Manji, et al.,2000).
Between the two theories, it seems that biochemical theories have provided more beneficial information to the field of abnormal psychology than any of Freud’s psychoanalytic ideas. While both theories have their place, the concrete evidence that biochemical theories have been studied comprehensively and we can see marked improvements in patients with drug therapy that stems from biochemical theories and research.
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