Jul 16, 2017 Research papers

Why is William’s chronic illness perceived differently by society than Fran’s chronic illness?

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Mental Health

INSTRUCTIONS:

Assignment Overview

For this week’s newspaper article, you decided to write about mental health. You chose this topic because of the experiences of two of your friends, William and Fran. Here are their stories:



William Mistral



William had been released from a provincial psychiatric hospital after having been admitted recently for intense psychotic symptoms. At the time of admission, William was highly agitated, yelling that the police were going to harm him because he’s Jack the Ripper’s brother. In the emergency room, William told the on-call psychiatrist that he was hearing voices of the devil preaching about his murderous relatives.



This was the patient’s third hospitalization since schizophrenia was first diagnosed 12 years earlier at age 22. William had made an excellent recovery from previous hospital stays: He had been working as a salesman at a hardware store for the past six years, and lived nearby in a small but comfortable apartment. He visited a psychiatrist at the community mental health center for medication about once a month. He also met with a counselor there to discuss strategies to cope with his mental illness. William had several friends in the area and was fond of playing softball with them in park district leagues. He had been dating a woman in the group for about a year and reported that he was “getting serious.” William was also active in the local Baptist Church, where he was co-leading Bible classes with the pastor. The reappearance of symptoms derailed his job, his apartment and his social life.



Recuperating from this episode involved more than just dealing with the symptoms of his illness. The reaction of friends, family members and professionals also affected what happened to Frank. The hardware store owner was frightened by William’s “mental hospitalization.” The owner had heard mentally ill people could be violent, and worried that the stress of the job might lead to a dangerous outburst in the shop. William’s mother had other concerns. She worried that the demands of living alone were excessive: “He’s pushing himself much too hard trying to keep that apartment clean and do all his own cooking,” she thought. She feared William might abandon his apartment and move to the streets, just like other mentally ill people she had seen.



William’s doctor was concerned his hospitalization signaled an overall lack of stability. His doctor believed schizophrenia was a progressively degenerative disease, a view first promoted by a renowned psychiatrist in 1913. In this view, psychiatric hospitalizations indicated the disease was worsening. The doctor concluded William’s ability to live independently would soon diminish; it was better to prepare for it now rather than wait for the inevitable loss of independent functioning. So the doctor, with the help of William’s mother and boss, talked him into leaving his job, giving up his apartment and moving in with his mother. William’s mother lived across town, so he stopped attending the Baptist church. William was unable to meet with his friends and soon dropped out of the sports league. He stopped seeing his girlfriend. In one month, he lost his job, apartment and friends.



Fran Wharton



Like William Mistral, Fran Wharton had been diagnosed with a significant and chronic disease: diabetes. She had to carefully monitor her sugar intake and self-administer insulin each day. She watched her lifestyle closely for situations that might aggravate her condition. Fran also met regularly with a physician and a dietitian to discuss blood sugar, diet, and exercise.



Despite these cautions, Fran had an active life. She was a 34-year-old clerk-typist for a small insurance broker. She belonged to a folk-dancing club she attended at a nearby secondary school. She was engaged to an accountant at the insurance company. Despite carefully watching her illness, Fran suffered a few setbacks, the last occurring about a month ago when she required a three-day hospitalization to adjust her medication. The doctor recommended a two-week break from work after her discharge, and referred her to the dietitian to discuss appropriate changes in lifestyle.



Even though diabetes is a life-threatening disease (in her most recent episode, Fran was near coma when she was wheeled into the hospital), no one suggested she consider institutional care where professionals could monitor her blood sugar and intervene when needed. Nor did anyone recommend Fran give up her job to avoid work-related stressors that might throw off her blood sugar.



Assignment Expectations

In your 2- to 3-page essay, please address the following:



Why is William’s chronic illness perceived differently by society than Fran’s chronic illness?

Is there more of a stigma about some types of mental illness than others? If so, why? Consider the various types of mental illness. Be specific—you want your readers to gain knowledge and understanding about the issue.

Case studies adapted from from Center for Addiction and Mental Health, Talking about Mental Illness (2012)

CONTENT:

Student Name: Institution: Course: Instructor: Date of Submission: Mental Health Schizophrenia is one of the severe mental disorders which when not correctly treated and monitored can cause severe effects to the patient. There are different types of mental illnesses which all vary in the degree of severity and the effects that they can cause. Schizophrenia is one of the chronic mental illnesses that are perceived as one of the most severe mental illness along with others like bipolar disorder (NCCMH, 2009). There are too other mental illnesses that are not very chronic but may have severe effects if not detected and treated early. These include depression and anxi

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