A concise but dry outline of the current standards of medical care for mental illness. Psychologists Nathan and Salkind, and psychiatrist Gorman divide the treatments into two basic types, which are often used in combination: psychosocial and pharmacological. After brief introductory notes on finding professional help for those with mental disorders, the authors address 13 categories of illness: disorders of childhood (attention-deficit, conduct), eating, sleep, and sexual disorders, substance use disorders, somatoform and dissociative disorders, depresssion and bipolar disorders, anxiety and phobia disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, schizophrenia, personality disorders, and disorders of aging. For each, they organize their information into a question/answer format (e.g., "How common is conduct disorder? . . . Are there specific characteristics of these children's families that make them different from other families? . . . Two of the strongest indicators are a history of criminal behavior and alcoholism"). Advice on how to proceed is brief, sometimes terse, and not always terribly helpful; the summary for anorexia tells us, for instance, that it "appears relatively infrequently . . . we don't know much about this mental illness, but it is a serious condition that requires medical care". However, resources for further reading and guidance are given for each disorder. Best as a starting point in looking for help and as a summary of the standard medical position on these mental illnesses.
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