Is the medical model dead? |
Mental Health |
Jennie Stone |
The aetiology of mental health problems is relatively unknown and has long been debated between the biomedical model and the social model ideologies. These are two very different perspectives each with their own theory to draw upon; the medical model philosophy is that biological factors are the aetiology of mental health problems, a disease of the brain. The social model perceives the aetiology of mental health problems as being a complex combination of social and environmental factors. These two conceptual frameworks are highly debatable as there is only empirical evidence to support either theory and with the vast amount mental health problems, is it probable that they could be linked to just one aetiology. One of the most controversial illnesses is the arbitrary concept of schizophrenia, with such wide scientific requirements for classification we have to question the reliability and validity of its hypothesis. The object of this essay is to explore the theories and interventions both these models hold in correlation to schizophrenia and the impact it has on the people that have to endure it, as well as the effects it has on the wider community.
The philosophy of the medical model, despite many criticisms still remains the predominant western approach to mental illness, concerned only with the biological aetiology (Shah and Mountain, 2007:375). It has various theories in reference to the aetiology of schizophrenia; elevated levels of dopamine in the brain resulting in abnormal signals being sent from one cell to another this disrupts functions such as emotion and social behaviour, which would elucidate the psychotic symptoms that occur. Imaging technology has also shown that schizophrenics have fluid filled cavities; ventricles in the brain, they also show to have less gray matter than that of a normal brain and with the substantial amount of evidence to...