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Compare and contrast illness behavior with sick role..
Inmates who suffer from such conditions like schizophrenia or serious axis I disorders, their perception of reality is seriously distorted which may be described as psychotic. They develop false beliefs, disruptions of consciousness, chaotic thoughts and at times false perception of the environment. Accompanying these are experiences of debilitating fears coupled with severe and uncontrollable mood swings (Lamb et al, 1998). The effect of this condition is that the mentally ill may resort to keeping to self silently in the cell, mumble or incessantly yell. As such, they may even hear voices commanding them to either commit acts of violence against others or against themselves. Their illnesses may be exhibited through violence, aggression or disruptive behavior. They may all over sudden stop or refuse to abide by the codes and rules such as coming out of the cell, taking showers or standing up for the count. They are likely to adopt unnatural behaviors like smearing feces on their bodies, self mutilation, knocking their heads on the walls or attempt suicide. In short, the mentally ill within the prisons behave in ways that are forbidden within the prisons. As such, their behaviors are bound to be termed as gross misconduct and hence punishable.
The primary goal of prisons is to ensure that the staff and inmates are secure. However, this goal is often difficult to achieve since it is in constant tension with the mentally ill vulnerability. All aspects of an inmate’s conduct are regulated by a complex system of procedures, rules and policies which are very comprehensive and form the basis for the operation of the prisons. It is absolutely paramount to comply with these rules. However, there are few provisions for prisoners whose mental illnesses are likely to lead them to break the prison rules. As much as there is an attempt by some prison systems to incorporate into their disciplinary systems considerations for mental health, the disciplinary system should be urgently reassessed against the backdrop of the increasing number of mentally ill prisoners.
So please, become a pioneer, and together let's drop the use of the phrase "mental illness," and search for more inclusive and creative phrases. This is a reminder that our words and even our whole social reality of what is called "normal," are not forced upon us God-given by the heavens, but are constructs that we mortals all co-create, in our imperfection, in our freedom, together.
Sociology Of Health And Illness Free Essays
The disciplinary hearings are seen to function like courts in the criminal justice system and hence provide a modicum of due process. They however do not recognize a subjects capacity to participate in the hearings and hence proceeds with the hearing regardless of whether an accused understand the charges or not. These disciplinary hearings do not allow for insanity defense which might appreciate that an individual had no control of his actions at the time of violation. The hearing officers may also not take into consideration the illness as a factor in determining the sentence. As such, they do not recognize that the prisoner is not in a position to control his behavior due to mental illness. The prison officers are also reluctant to include considerations of illness as a factor in disciplinary hearings. They see this as providing an excuse for the misconduct of prisoners.
However, many correctional officers are not sufficiently trained in mental health and hence do not comprehend the nature of mental disorder and how it affects behavior (Munetz et al, 2001). They normally are not in a position to distinguish between the behavior of an inmate who acts out of frustration and disgruntlement or an inmate under the effects and consequences of mental illness. They often assume that misconduct is either manipulative or volitional. For instance, an officer may have no idea that an inmate banged his head against the wall because he is experiencing severe and uncontrolled hallucinations. As such, he may proceed and issue a ticket. As many medical directors have pointed out, correctional officers refer inmates to the disciplinary process even if the prisoner is experiencing symptoms of mental illness.
When it comes to punishing the mentally ill who have acted out, their mental condition is often not taken into account. There is sufficient evidence to the fact that inmates who are seriously ill mentally are treated with punitive measures so as to control their behavior without any inquiry or regard for the cause or impact of such measures on the inmate’s mental situation (Torrey, 1997). The mentally ill prisoners are often punished under the prisons disciplinary system for violation of prison codes whether this violation is as a result of mental illness or not. Infractions are often adjudicated to formal hearing unless they are minor. Theoretically, an individual may be found not guilty in prison disciplinary hearings but this rarely happens in practice. Instead, the hearings are basically meant for determining the the kind of punishment an inmate should be subjected to.
Sociological Perspectives on Health and Illness Essay …
Other findings indicate that the number of mentally ill individuals in prisons exceed those in mental health hospitals threefold (Ditton, 1999). This number as compared to those in the general public is between two to four times greater. As much as there exists little historical data, mental health experts agree that the number of inmates with mental illness is alarmingly increasing. Individuals with serious mental illness when left untreated and unstable, especially those languishing in poverty, alcoholism and drug addiction often break the law and enter the criminal justice system. This failure of the society, manifested in the failure of the mental health system has resulted into criminalization of the mentally ill.
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Page 2 Sociological Perspectives on Health and Illness Essay
Of course, a teenager threatening suicide, for example, is in a terrible crisis and we as a society must provide humane, compassionate, and wise assistance on an urgent basis. However, we also need to remember that all of humanity -- in its self-destructive adolescence -- is far more similar to that suicidal teen than they are different. Sometimes realizing our commonalities can play a big role in providing empathy. In a way, one can see the label as "crazy," as essentially saying that someone else's behavior or thoughts are simply so non-understandable, so non-predictable, that they are beyond the realm of your imagining why they might do this.
Effects behavior illness essays of stress. innate behavior
Sometimes I'm told that things are getting better, because so many people are "labeled." There are celebrities and co-workers who candidly discuss their diagnosis of depression, anxiety, or attention deficit disorder. However, in some ways things are worse for one of the most serious diagnoses, "psychosis." As I've noted, technically "psychosis" can include many of the people who are labeled schizophrenic and bipolar.
Mental Illness and Mental Health Essay
â For students working to one day become professional educators themselves, there are a host of publications that can be beneficial in the lifelong learning process; an example of such a publication is the Journal of Educational Psychology.
Essay on Mental illness and Prisons | Get a Custom Essay
Ironically, today, psychiatry's own official label bible, the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual, does not refer to the phrase "mental illnesses," but to mental disorders. Even inside the DSM, which psychiatry generally believes albeit falsely to be scientific, they do not use the phrase "mentally ill" in diagnosing, so it is actually scientifically impossible, by psychiatry's own standards, to be officially "diagnosed mentally ill."
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