DSM-5: current prejudices. Review current debates around DSM-5 stating your position.

For many years, the diagnosis and treatment of mental illnesses has relied on the guidelines of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, DSM. The book offers detailed classifications regarding mental conditions like depression, anxiety disorders, personality disorders, schizophrenia, among others. In mental health, it is considered the “bible” of psychiatry where all psychiatrists refer to when diagnosing and treating patients with varying mental conditions. Since it was first published in 1952, the book has undergone several revisions with each edition attracting varying degrees of criticism

But the most recent edition the DSM-5 published in May 2013 stirred numerous and heated debates and controversies from mental health professionals and other mental health advocates. Research Paper Writing Service: Professional Help in Research Projects for Students – One particularly significant change that sparked a public outcry was concerning autism, where the fifth edition of DSM combined four separate autistic disorders, including Asperger’s Syndrome under a single umbrella term, “Autism Spectrum Disorder.” The concerns were that people previously diagnosed with Asperger’s syndrome were at the risk of losing social and educational services and benefits.

Many professionals are also opposed to the change in DSM-5 is regarding a new illness referred to as Disruptive Mood Dysregulation Disorder (DMDD). It is the new diagnosis for children and teens with severe and frequent episodes of anger and outbursts and who have an excessive temper and increased irritability. DMDD will encompass Major Depressive Disorder but not child bipolar disorder.

Allen Frances, a professor at Duke University and one of the most outspoken critics of DSM-5, believes that the country suffers from a “glut of overdiagnosis and overmedication.” According to him, DSM-5 has nothing to do with symptoms, buy sheer labeling. He and other critics feel that changes made through the DSM-5 have mad psychiatric diagnosis too loose by broadening the definition of various mental illnesses.

According to Dr. Edward Shorter, a social historian of medicine at the University of Toronto, all the debates regarding the DSM have always revolved around what he refers to as “horse-trading” rather than scientific analysis. To him, DSM-5 and all other versions of the book have never been an accurate representation of psychiatric science.

But despite all the critics, numerous mental health professionals still support and defend the DSM-5 and its principles. While there are visibly some scientific and clinical failings, the book still represents a great deal of mental knowledge, which is very beneficial in psychiatry. It is the most suitable platform where all information regarding psychiatric disorders can be conveyed. When used rationally, the limitations can be suppressed, a balance can be attained, and the primary purpose of the book achieved.

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