The field of psychology is vast and diverse, and it covers a wide range of subjects, such as human behavior, development, personality, motivation, and emotion.
Different subfields and specialty areas have emerged as a result.
Mental health is the obvious application for psychology.
Psychologists use principles, research, and clinical findings to manage and overcome symptoms of mental distress and psychological illness.
The study of abnormal psychology examines patterns of emotion, thought, and behavior that are indicative of mental health problems.
Instead of distinguishing between normal and abnormal, psychologists in this field focus on the level of distress caused by behaviors, thoughts, or emotions.
An “abnormal” behavior is one that creates problems in a person’s life or disturbs other people.
In such cases, mental health intervention may be needed.
Biopsychology is the study of how the brain, neurotransmitters, and other aspects of our biology influence our behavior, thoughts, and feelings.
Biopsychology, physiological psychology, behavioral neuroscience, and psychobiology are some of the other names used to describe this field of psychology.
A biopsychologist examines how biological processes interact with emotions, cognitions, and other mental processes.
Biopsychology is related to several other fields, including comparative psychology and evolutionary psychology.
The field of clinical psychology deals with the assessment and treatment of mental illness, abnormal behavior, and psychiatric conditions.
In this field, psychology is integrated with the treatment of complex human problems.
Cognitive psychology examines how people acquire, process, and store information.
There are several major areas of interest in cognitive psychology, including language, attention, memory, decision-making, and problem-solving.
There are many practical applications of cognitive psychology.
Cognitive principles are often applied to the design of educational materials and software, for example.
Comparative psychology is the branch of psychology concerned with studying animal behavior.
Animal behavior research began with Charles Darwin and Georges Romanes, and has evolved into a multidisciplinary field.
Many disciplines contribute to the study of animal behavior today, including biologists, psychologists, anthropologists, ecologists, geneticists, and others.
When studying animal behavior, comparative psychologists often use a comparative method.
To gain an understanding of evolutionary relationships, comparative methods analyze differences and similarities among species.
Comparing modern species of animals to ancient species can also be done using the comparative method.
Developmental psychology is the branch of psychology that examines how people develop and change throughout their lifetime.
Those who specialize in this field are not just concerned with the physical changes that occur with age; they also analyze the social, emotional, and cognitive changes that take place.
Developmental psychologists can help with a number of issues, including:
Forensic psychology is a combination of psychology and law.
People who work in this field apply psychological expertise to the justice system.
The word ‘forensic’ comes from the Latin word ‘forensis,’ which means “the forum,” or the court system of Ancient Rome.
A forensic psychologist typically performs the following functions:
The field of industrial-organizational psychology focuses on applying psychological concepts and theory to organizations.
Sometimes known as I-O psychology, this field concerns itself with workplace productivity and related topics such as the physical and mental health of employees.
In addition to studying worker attitudes and behaviors, industrial-organizational psychologists evaluate companies and provide leadership training.
Studying and understanding human behavior at work is the overall goal of this field.
Your unique personality shapes everything you do, from your relationships to your daily activities.
The study of personality is a subject that you may be able to describe, but what do you know about how it is scientifically studied?
Personality psychology is among the largest and most popular branches of psychology.
Studying personality psychology allows professionals to better understand how personality develops, as well as how it influences how we think and behave.
Psychologists study the differences and similarities between people’s personalities.
Their work also includes assessing, diagnosing, and treating disorders that affect your personality.
How do we shape our attitudes?
How do some people become such great leaders?
What causes prejudice, and how can we overcome it?
Those are just a few of the big questions in social psychology.
A social psychologist examines topics that can significantly affect one’s health and well-being, from analyzing bullying behavior to determining why people neglect to help individuals in need.
The purpose of social psychology is to understand how each individual’s behavior is influenced by the social environment in which it takes place.
One of the most obvious applications for psychology is in the field of mental health, where psychologists use research and clinical findings to assist clients in managing and overcoming mental distress and psychological illness.
Psychologists can also assist with the following issues:
Studies have shown that psychological treatments can help with mental illnesses like:
They have also been successful in helping people deal with:
It may take a few weeks for you to see results from most psychological treatments. It may take a year or more for some types of treatment to fully benefit you. While they are not a quick fix, the benefits may last for a long time. Various psychological treatments are available to address different issues.
The following are some of the most common treatments:
The foundation of acceptance and commitment therapy (ACT) is mindfulness (being aware of the present moment).
The idea is to accept negative thoughts and emotions as passing through, not defining you.
It is used to treat a number of psychological disorders, including stress, anxiety, schizophrenia and personality disorders.
Cognitive analytic therapy (CAT) is an approach where you reflect on your childhood experiences and consider the ways you have managed them.
Your therapist helps you change how you view situations and how you respond to them.
The idea behind cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is that our emotions are generated by our thoughts.
You will be asked to challenge unhelpful thoughts you tell yourself daily.
Say, for example, that you think, “I will probably fail at the presentation I am giving tomorrow.”.
You feel anxious and depressed as a result.
A CBT therapist asks you to provide evidence for and against a particular thought.
Then, you are asked to suggest a more balanced approach to the situation by considering both sides.
Depression and anxiety are commonly treated with cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT).
DBT focuses on tackling problem emotions (such as anger) and behaviors (such as cutting).
People with personality disorders often benefit from DBT.
In family therapy, members of the family talk to each other under the guidance of a therapist.
The idea of family therapy is to encourage the family to work together, in order to mend relationships and get you back to the point of functioning as a cohesive unit.
A group therapy session involves a group of people with similar problems talking under the guidance of a therapist.
In group therapy, you will be able to hear from others who are dealing with similar issues to you, to hear their perspectives, and to gain a greater understanding of your own condition.
Interpersonal therapy is a short-term treatment therapy specifically targeted towards those with depression.
This activity asks you to think about and discuss your relationships with other people, as well as how they affect your mood and emotions.
Mentalization-based therapy (MBT) is used to treat people with personality disorders. The focus is on helping you to understand the mental states of other people and yourself.
Practicing mindfulness means focusing on the present moment rather than worrying about the past or the future.
You can practice mindfulness on your own in a quiet moment or with a therapist or even an app on your phone.
Mindfulness can be helpful in reducing depression and anxiety.
Through motivational interviewing, you are encouraged to make changes in your life without being judged or told what to do.
People who are trying to reduce their drug, alcohol, smoking, or gambling habits often turn to this therapy.
Psychodynamic psychotherapy allows you to understand your behavior patterns, defenses, and inner struggles.
It is believed that once your inner struggles are revealed, both your behavior and feelings will improve.
Some of the issues you face with your therapist may reflect issues in your life.
Psychoanalysis is a more intensive, specialized form of psychodynamic therapy, typically involving several sessions per week.
This type of therapy uses a conversational approach to help you to relax and feel less anxious while coming up with practical solutions to stressful situations.
The study of psychology involves four major areas: clinical psychology (mental and behavioral health counseling), cognitive psychology (the study of mental processes), behavioral psychology (understanding behavior through conditioning), and biopsychology (studying the brain, behavior, and evolution).
Psychologists study cognitive, emotional, and social processes and behaviors by observing, interpreting, and recording how individuals relate to one another and to their environment.
Psychologists may conduct research, consult with clients, or work with patients on an independent basis.
The purpose of psychodynamic therapy is to develop the client’s own internal resources so that they can deal with problems on their own in the future.
An individual with depression, for example, may learn to consider how past events may influence what they do in the present.
Many groups are designed to address specific problems, such as depression, obesity, panic disorder, social anxiety, chronic pain, or substance abuse.
Other groups work to improve social skills by helping people deal with issues such as anger, shyness, loneliness, and low self-esteem.
A group therapy session involves several people being treated simultaneously by one or more therapists.
Many places offer this type of therapy, including clinics, hospitals, and community centers.
Group therapy is typically given to people who have suffered from abuse or currently suffer from an addiction to something, such as sex, gambling, drugs or alcohol.
The goals of family therapy are usually improving communication, resolving family problems, understanding and handling special family situations, and creating a better functioning home environment.
Family therapy helps to address issues that affect the mental health and functioning of families.
It can help each family member build stronger relationships, improve communication, and manage conflict within the family system.