DSM-V,

Week 2
This week, we will learn the explanation and criterion for Substance Use Disorder (SUD) as established in the DSM-V. Guided by the DSM-V, we will also learn about the levels of the intensity of addiction, which ultimately would help you determine the modality of treatment for a client (i.e., treatment will be discussed later in our course). This week, we will also learn about the physiological and psychological models of addiction (i.e., these are the global categories that other models fall within).

As a clinician dealing with addicts, it will be very important for you to understand comorbidity. This week, we will be presented with an interview of three clinicians who will share some of their experiences related to treating individuals with co-occurring disorders. This, however, will just be an introduction to the concept, as we will examine comorbidity in more detail later in our course.

Your Learning Objectives for the Week:

Explain the major psychological theories and principles in the field of addictions
Explain the physical, social and psychological effects of illegal and legal substance use issues.
Critically evaluate research studies in the addictions field

Week 2 Project

Read the two case studies below. Then answer the questions in a Word document.

Case Study 1

Staria is a seventeen-year-old girl who has been brought to your outpatient treatment center by her mother. Staria has been suspended from high school on two occasions over the past six weeks for fighting and disorderly conduct. She has a history of recurrent detention and classroom dismissals for similar, though less severe, behavior at her previous high school. On the last occasion, she and another student were engaged in an altercation in the hallway. When security was called in, it was discovered that Staria had a pint of vodka and a small quantity of marijuana in her locker. At the time, it was noticed that Starina seemed intoxicated. She later tested positive for marijuana.

You meet Staria and her mother and learn that Staria stole alcohol and marijuana from her father’s stash and that he was outraged by the discovery. Staria blames her parents for her school dismissal and feels she is being blamed and scapegoated by her parents. According to her, her parents are the ones who need counseling. She also reports that her grandfather recently passed away due to cirrhosis. Her mother states that Staria has a twin sister, who never uses drugs, cigarettes, or alcohol and that Staria should be more like her sister.

Case Study 2

George is a civil service employee who has been struggling with his drinking problem for years. He has tried to control his alcohol use and has made many attempts to refrain. Lately, he has been drinking more frequently to feel the same effect; he even drinks before he goes to work. His family has a history of alcoholism. Although George is aware of the genetic origins concept, he feels embarrassed and struggles to identify himself as an alcoholic. He compares himself with others who drink far more than he does, and in his perception, this rationalizes that he is not that bad.
George continues to drink despite the adverse consequences on his health and sociocultural relationships. In the past three years, he has experienced the following consequences:

  • One arrest for driving under the influence (DUI)
  • Loss of a job
  • Mood swings
  • Fights and arguments with family members over his drinking
  • Frequent inability to stop drinking
  • Blackouts
  • Need for increasing amounts of alcohol in order to get high

George’s present employer asks him to attend Alcoholics Anonymous meetings. George responds, “I am not like those people. I am not that bad.”

Based on the case studies given above, create a Microsoft Word document that answers the following:

  • Using the DSM-V criterion, diagnose Staria and George. Explain the diagnosis by incorporating discussion over the concepts of addiction (i.e., withdrawal, tolerance, physical dependence, comorbidity, and psychological dependence).  Be sure to explain the selected diagnosis.
  • The models for substance use can be categorized as physiological and psychological. Within each of these general categories, however, are different specialized foci. Review the Theories of Alcoholism document, as well as conduct research to determine which model(s) aid in understanding what is happening with Staria and George.
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