Mental Health Terms

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There are currently 23 names in this directory beginning with the letter C.
Case management/Case co-ordination
The mechanism for ensuring continuity of care across inpatient and community settings, for access to and co-ordination of the range of services necessary to meet the individual and identified needs of a person within and outside the mental health service.

Child or adolescent antisocial behaviour
This category can be used when the focus of clinical attention is antisocial behaviour in a child or adolescent that is not due to a mental disorder.

Childhood Disintegrative Disorder
A developmental disorder occurring as a result of a brain disease such as Encephalitis in childhood. Symptoms include abnormalities of behaviour, progressing to psychosis.

Chronic mental illness
An illness or disorder which is severe in degree and persistent in duration. The symptoms may be permanent or episodic. There may also be a substantially diminished level of functioning in the primary aspects of daily living.

A recipient of mental health services: may be a person, family, group or community.

Cognitive Behavioural Therapy
A psychological treatment approach which focuses on enabling the client/patient to adjust the way they think (i.e. their cognition) as well as adjust their behaviour in response to events and stimuli. This therapy recognises that cognition affects behaviour and behaviour affects cognition, therefore therapy must address both. Although cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is a recognised therapy within itself many psychological therapies integrate cognitive and behavioural approaches.

Cognitive development
The development of intelligence, conscious thought and reasoning that begins in infancy.

Cognitive Disorder
A disorder where the person shows decreased abilities in memory, problem solving, etc. It is generally associated with a general medical condition but could be a psychological impairment.

Communication disorders
A group of disorders where there are problems in communicating, either through difficulties in receiving language or in speech. Generally these disorders stem from a general medical condition such as a brain injury or stroke, or a developmental problem in children. Examples are: Expressive Language Disorder, Mixed Receptive-Expressive Language Disorder, Phonological Disorder, Stuttering and Communication Disorder Not Otherwise Specified.

Group of people with common characteristics, locations or interests.

Community mental health service
Local treatment centre where community treatment is provided.

Community support systems
Resources that are used to bolster the natural support system (including the family) of chronically disabled people living in the community.

Community treatment
The provision of routine treatment and support services in a variety of community settings to people with mental disorders and serious mental health problems. These include clinic based services, outpatient services, domiciliary and other visiting services, and consultation and liaison services to general practitioners, primary health care and private sector providers.

Compulsions are repetitive behaviours (eg. hand washing, ordering, checking) or mental acts (eg. praying, counting, repeating words silently) the goal of which is to prevent or reduce anxiety or distress.

Irresistible impulsive behaviour in which a person feels compelled to carry out certain actions, such as repetitive hand washing based on a fear of contamination.

Conduct Disorder
A repetitive or persistent pattern of aggressive behaviour. It is usually recognised in childhood or adolescence and can lead to an Impulsive Personality Disorder.

Being aware of the existence of one’s own mental state.

Continuity of care
The provision of barrier-free access to the necessary range of health care services and other support agencies, with the level of support and care varying according to individual needs.

Efforts directed towards how to manage stress, conflict and change.

A health professional that helps clients and families evaluate their patterns of problem solving and develop more effective ones.

A turning point that results from a stressful event or a perceived threat to one’s well-being that cannot be readily solved by methods that have been successful in the past.

Culture-bound syndromes
Culture-bound syndromes are generally limited to specific societies or culture areas and are localised, folk, diagnostic categories that frame coherent meanings for certain repetitive, patterned and troubling sets of experiences and observations.

Cyclothymic Disorder
A disorder with marked swings of mood from cheerfulness to depression. These fluctuations are not as severe as those of Bipolar Affective Disorder.

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