DSST Fundamentals of counseling

Most people consult a mental health professional for

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Most people consult a mental health professional for an Axis I disorder, but may find that its onset is underpinned by an Axis II disorder. Axis II disorders include personality disorders and mental retardation and the presence of these indicates that treatment will be more difficult. Axis IV is focused on the patient's psychosocial and environmental problems that could be contributing to their condition. A person's environment contributes to their mental health in a considerable manner. Axis IV of the DSM focuses on psychosocial and environmental problems that could be contributing to a person's disorder. In the last two issues of the DSM, there has been a significant increase in the number of diagnostic categories. Several new diagnostic categories were added from DSM-III onwards. These include categories for eating disorders, some anxiety disorders, some personality disorders, and disorders of childhood. Axis III of DSM-IV is concerned with general medical conditions that could be contributing to the disorder. A person's medical well-being, assessed on a multiaxial classification system, may markedly impact upon their mental health. Axis V of the DSM-IV indicates an individual's level of adaptive functioning. This uses the Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) scale. The Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) scale considers things such as social relationships and occupational functioning. The field of psychological counseling has many different areas of specialty. These specialty areas have developed based on society’s needs and the expansion of specific needs required by individuals. School counseling involves assisting students with vocational preparations.
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School counselors (traditionally called Guidance Counselors) are often the first and only counselor a person has contact with. The school counselor helps students with course selection, career counseling, college planning and preparation, and social issues. Counselors also provide student services in higher education such as admissions, career planning, academic advisors, and support for minorities, women, persons with a disability, and veterans. Substance abuse counseling involves helping individuals deal with problems related to drug and alcohol use. Substance abuse counseling has become quite prevalent in society today. Substance abuse counselors understand the dynamics of drug use and abuse and use that knowledge to prevent or correct or further abuse. Counselors go beyond the “drug treatment” approach and recognize that the individual needs counseling in order to develop the skills necessary to deal with their problems and change their behavior. A specialty offshoot of substance abuse counseling is the counseling of children of substance abusers. The counseling profession recognizes that many of these children have not developed the coping skills necessary to deal with life’s ups and downs.
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