The term psychotic disorders refer to serious illnesses in an individual which affect the mind. There are different types of psychotic disorders (Tandy, 2001). The disorders are characterized by inability to behave appropriately, respond emotionally, understand reality and communicate well. Examples of psychotic disorders include schizoaffective disorder, shared psychotic disorder, schizophrenia and brief psychotic disorder. These disorders vary in their effect on the patient. The symptoms of the disorders are delusions and hallucinations (Daryl and Iqbal, 2007).
Delusions are false beliefs that seem organized and are persistent in the affected individual. Delusions can be seen in patients even after they are given accurate and logical information to eliminate the false belief. According to researchers, the cause of psychotic disorders has not yet been established. Research findings show that psychotic disorders result from the interaction between biological and psychosocial factors (Freudenreich, 2007). However, claims have been made that psychotic disorders have a biological origin.
In this paper, a critical evaluation of the claim that psychotic disorders have a biological origin will be done by focusing on the causes of different types psychotic disorders. Discussion Based on research findings that relate to various psychotic disorders, biological origin may or may not be the cause of disorders in individuals. Schizophrenia which is one of the psychotic disorders is considered to have a biological origin the association of its development with genetic inheritance. Many medical analysts have asserted that schizophrenia results interaction between genetic factors with environmental factors.
Currently, research is being conducted to confirm the major cause of the disorder. However, scientists have supported the claim that schizophrenia has a biological origin. The disorder is said to run in families and a situation that confirms that schizophrenia may have a biological origin is the argument that the disorder occurs in the general population at the rate of one percent. In families where a first degree relative such as a sister, parent or a brother have a psychotic disorder, research findings show that 10 per cent of individuals with a first degree relative with psychotic disorders have the disorder.
In addition, when compared with the general population, people who have second degree relatives who have psychotic disorders are more likely to have the disorders as compared to those without relatives who have developed the disorder. Second degree relatives include cousins, grand parents, aunties and uncles. However, arguments have been presented to object the connection between genetic components and psychotic disorders. For example, serious doubts in relation to the validity of a unitary schizophrenia disease have been given.
This makes it difficult to relate genetic evidence to the disorder. Extensive review literature in the past has questioned the validity of the conclusion that genetic factors cause the disorder. Genetic theorists are still seeking for ways of establishing the connection between hereditary component and Schizophrenia (Bentall and Slade, 1988). Although scientific studies about the disorder do not prove that biological origin is entirely responsible for causing the disorder, an individual who has relatives with disorder have a genetic risk of developing schizophrenia (Heinz,2003).
In order for schizophrenia to develop in a person, both the environmental and the genetic factors interact to encourage the disorder to develop. Examples of environmental factors that increase one’s risk of developing the disorder include stressful environmental conditions, problems during birth, psychological factors and exposure to viruses. These factors increase the risk of one developing schizophrenia. Some studies show that one’s genetic composition may increase one’s risk of developing a psychotic disorder.
However, genes alone are not responsible for causing the disorder but the interaction of the genes and environmental factors leads to the development of the disorder. The exact cause of the schizoaffective disorder is not known. However, biochemical, environmental and genetic factors contribute to the development of the disorder. Biochemical factors may cause the disorder when there is an imbalance of some chemicals in one’s brain. The chemicals are referred to as neurotransmitters and when there is an imbalance, the interference of message transmission in the brain leads to the symptoms of schizoaffective disorder.
Parents who have developed the disorder pass the risk of developing the disorder to their children. Because environmental factors act as a catalyst in triggering schizoaffective disorder in people with a genetic risk, children whose parents have developed the disorder when exposed to highly stressful situation, viral infections and poor social relation are likely to develop schizoaffective disorder. Environmental factors act as a catalyst to the development of the disorder (Habermann and Ghosh, 2006).