Influences on Behavior and Psychological Disorders

Thesis Statement

Influences on behavior and psychological disorders are the powers affecting persons and can be discussed as factors that cause these disorders, or the things that trigger these disorders. These could be biological, genetic, environmental, social and psychological factors; they could be a single factor triggering the disorder or a combination of them.


Behavior can be described as the response of a living thing in reaction to the outside and inside environment. Behavior disorders which are sometimes referred to as disruptive behavior disorders are a derangement or abnormality of function which include mental health problems with a focus on behaviors that both identify emotional problems and create interpersonal and social problems for children and adolescents in the course of their development (Robert et al, 2004). There are many types of behavioral disorders; common ones are deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), conduct disorders which focuses on mental problems, as well as oppositional defiant disorders, a condition of disorderly dealings with others.

Psychological disorders are also known as mental disorders and are defined as “a pattern of behavioral or psychological symptoms that impact multiple life areas and/ or create distress for the person experiencing these symptoms” (Irving et al, 2003). There are many psychological disorders classified according to categories of diagnosis in the ICD, DSM schemes, these include dissociative disorders, mood disorders, anxiety disorders, psychotic disorders, development disorders, personality disorders, ambulatory disorders among others.

Most of the common disorders are depression, schizophrenia, anxiety disorders, impulse control disorders, family problems, post-traumatic stress disorders, obsessive compulsive disorders among others. Psychological disorders have been found to be common where most countries reporting a third of the population having sufficient criteria at some point in their life. This is the reason why seeking a psychologist’s help when psychological problems interfere with ones emotional or physical health, relationships, work productivity or life adjustment according to John & Catherine (2000).

Influences on Behavior and Psychological Disorder

Influence on the behavior and psychological disorders are the powers affecting persons and can be discussed as factors that cause these disorders or the things that trigger these disorders. These could be biological, genetic, environmental, social and psychological factors; they could be a single factor triggering the disorder or a combination of them.

A combination of genetic, biological and life experiences can result to a predisposition toward an abnormal or diseased condition which combines with environmental stresses resulting in abnormal behavior. For instance, schizophrenia which has no known cause could result from a biochemical abnormality such as an enzyme defect or neurological deficit. The greater the predisposition, the less the stress needed to trigger the disorder and vice versa (John & Catherine, 2000).

However both the predisposition and the stress are needed for this to occur. This knowledge has helped of protective measures such as psychopharmacology, skill building and development of support systems for individuals with these illnesses. This has allowed mental health workers, family members and clients to create a personal profile of what happens when the problem starts, what hurts(stressors) and what helps(protective factors). This has enhanced more humane, effective, efficient and empowering treatment interventions

The social cognitive theory argues that parts of an individual knowledge are acquired through observing other within the contexts of social interactions, experience and outside media influences. For instance, a boy who grows up observing a ‘gentleman’ who never raises his voice or shows his anger may suffer depression as a result of failing to express his feelings of rage. A person can also develop depression as a result of feelings of low self esteem; self-worth or one looses sight of his dreams due to poverty as a social factor.

Poverty may also result to family problems. Other disorders are as a result of social environment a person has grown. Childhood events like overly critical parents or highly protective ones may leave children feeling they may never measure up or inadequate and therefore react with anxiousness to situations or have panic attacks.

Environmental factors both man made and natural are other influxes to behavioral and psychological disorders. Traumatic environmental experiences such as war overwhelm normal biological and psychological mechanisms resulting in feelings of helplessness, terror and loss of control. These feelings cause post-traumatic stress disorders characterized with inability to talk, see or move-and yet there are no physical injuries. This was the case with some veterans of the Vietnam War when the American Psychiatric Association recognized it as a genuine psychiatric disorder (Irving et al, 2003)

Influences to behavioral and psychological disorders may also be genetic. For instance Attention-Deficit/ Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) has known cause but available evidence indicates that it is genetic disorder. It is a brain-based biological disorder associated with low levels of dopamine which is a neurotransmitter. PET scans, easily done on the head of patients, show that there is ADHD children’s brain metabolism in children with ADHD is lower in areas of brain that control attention, social judgement, and movement. ADHD is commonly found in people of the same family. Moreover parents of children with ADHD had symptoms of the same when they were young.


In conclusion, there are several factors that influence behavior and psychological disorders. These include biological, social genetic, psychological, biological and environmental. These can act each on its own or in a combination. The disorders range from mild one such as feelings of sadness to severe ones like schizophrenia which requires psychological attention. They can also range from those lasting a short time to those that last a lifetime and require personal management profile for controlling.


Robert, B. R.,Mary M. Q.& Sarup R. M. (2004). Handbook of research in emotional and Behavioral Disorders. Guilford Press.

Rita Wicks-Nelson. & Allen C. Israel. (1991). Behavior disorders of childhood. Prentice Hall.

Irving B. Weiner, Donald K. Freedheim, John R. Graham, John A. Schinka, Jack A. Naglieri & Wayne F. Velicer. (2003). Handbook of Psychology: Assessment psychology. John Wiley and Sons.

John J. R. & Catherine J. (2000) Shadow Syndromes: Recognizing and Coping With the Hidden Psychological Disorders That Can Influence Your Behavior and Silently Determine the Course of Your Life. Diane Pub Co.

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