Discussion: Factors That Influence the Development of Psychopathology

In many realms of medicine, objective diagnoses can be made: A clavicula is broken. Infection is present. TSH levels meet the diagnostic criteria for hypothyroidism. Psychiatry, on the other hand, deals with psychological phenomena and behaviors. Can these, too, be “defined objectively and by scientific criteria (Gergen, 1985), or are they social constructions?” (Sadock et al., 2015).

Thanks to myriad advances during recent decades, we know that psychopathology is caused by many interacting factors. Theoretical and clinical contributions to the field have come from the neural sciences, genetics, psychology, and social-cultural sciences. How do these factors impact the expression, classification, diagnosis, and prevalence of psychopathology, and why might it be important for a nurse practitioner to take a multidimensional, integrative approach?

To Prepare:

  • Review this week’s Learning Resources, considering the many interacting factors that contribute to the development of psychopathology.
  • Consider how the theoretical perspective on psychopathology impacts the work of the PMHNP.


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  • Explain the biological (genetic and neuroscientific); psychological (behavioral and cognitive processes, emotional, developmental); and social, cultural, and interpersonal factors that influence the development of psychopathology.

Factors That Influence the Development of Psychopathology Sample Essay


The biological basis of psychopathology argues that individuals are genetically predisposed to developing mental problems similar to those of their parents or family members. Qi et al. (2018) conducted research on teenagers between the ages of 15 and 21 and examined the connection between distress endurance and the ability to deal with anxiety in individuals. When it comes to distress endurance and anxiety, teenagers who potentially might have inherited features of depression and anxiety disorders in puberty have different characteristics. A total of 848 girls participated in the teenage epidemiology research, and those who experienced fewer anxiety attacks and no anxiety manifestations following reassessment had a greater capacity to handle mental distress, according to the findings of the research (Qi et al., 2021).

Psychopathology encompasses the ideals and conventions of a certain society. Psychological evaluations are an important part of the process of identifying mental disorders. There are a variety of evaluations present, including personality and cognitive evaluations, which may assist in the diagnosis of mental and personality impairments (Kaplan, 2016). For the efficient service of diversified cultural groups, it is critical to have a thorough understanding of their psychopathology and interplay (Cheung & Mak, 2018). Research has found and explained the knowledge of interpersonal, psychological, and emotional aspects of psychobiology. The cortico-limbic circuit, for instance, has been shown in imaging investigations to be a part of the brain that is involved in providing a substrate for adaptive behavioral and emotional responses. With the idea of intersectionality, individuals can better comprehend the many social factors that influence interpersonal functioning. These factors include gender and ethnicity, age; individuality; health; and discrimination.


Cheung, F. M., & Mak, W. W. (2018). Sociocultural factors in psychopathology. APA handbook of psychopathology: Psychopathology: Understanding, assessing, and treating adult mental disorders (Vol. 1), 127-147. https://doi.org/10.1037/0000064-006

Kaplan, B. J. (2016). Kaplan and sadock’s synopsis of psychiatry. Behavioral sciences/clinical psychiatry. Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie58(1), 78-79. https://www.tijdschriftvoorpsychiatrie.nl/issues/497/articles/10744

Qi, J., Rappaport, L. M., Cecilione, J., Hettema, J. M., & Roberson-Nay, R. (2019). Differential associations of distress tolerance and anxiety sensitivity with adolescent internalizing psychopathology. Journal of Clinical Child & Adolescent Psychology, 50(1), 97-104. https://doi.org/10.1080/15374416.2019.1602838

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