Evaluate the biological (medical approach) and behaviourist approach to abnormality.
There are many different ways to explain the nature and treatment of mental illness. This essay will talk about 2 of the 5 models, the biological model and the behaviourist model.
The biological (medical) model has dominated the psychiatric profession since the last century. It was first demonstrated by Charles Darwin in 1859. The main theory of the biomedical approach is that mental illness resembles physical illness and so can be diagnosed and treated in a similar way. This is why it is called the biological model, because it is assumed that mental disorders can develop from physical causes such as germs, genetic factors, biochemical balances and changes to the nervous system (pbworks.nd).
There are issues surrounding this approach which include the fact that symptoms of mental illness cannot be measured by observing or doing tests on the individual unlike with physical illnesses, this means that the clinicians diagnoses would be formed mostly from their experience in the field. The biological model does not consider any social or environment factors of the clients background, childhood experiences and the influence and behaviour of family, peers and media can all effect our behaviour, things such as being poor could certainly effect the way somebody feels so could be linked to mental illness along with other social or cultural factors. Cause and effect cannot always be determined, for example does depression cause chemical imbalances in the brain or do the chemical imbalances cause depression? Either way it can be treated with anti-depressant drugs and help the symptoms, but the patient may become reliant on these drugs and feel that they are solving the problem when really they are just masking the symptoms instead of getting to the root of the cause of their illness.
Providing a structured and logical system of diagnoses and treatment, the biological model is based on...