Mental Disorders Recognition Checklist

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Mental health is the capacity to think rationally and logically, and to cope with stresses and traumas in ways that allow emotional stability. Mentally healthy individuals perceive reality as it is, respond to challenges, carry out their responsibilities, and deal reasonably with others. It is vitally important that President Donald Trump have good mental health.

A mental disorder is a behavioral or psychological condition or syndrome that causes significant distress, disability, disturbed functioning, or increased risk of harm or pain to one’s self or others. The mental health professions’ gold standard for making a mental disorder diagnosis in the United States is the pattern of symptoms, or diagnostic criteria, as defined for the disorders in the fifth edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5).

Diagnosticians also look for personality disorders, which are long-standing patterns of thinking and behaving that cause distress or interfere with normal functioning. Individuals with personality disorders are more likely to fall into a pattern of repeated crises in their lives and to develop other emotional and mental problems.

Listed below are 245 symptoms that everyday citizens can use to help recognize the possible existence of the following 20 commonly diagnosed mental disorders:
1. Personality Disorders,
2. Bipolar Disorders,
3. Attention Disorders in Adults,
4. Depressive Disorders,
5. Schizophrenia and Other Psychotic Disorders,
6. Anxiety Disorders,
7. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder,
8. Substance Dependence and Abuse,
9. Alcohol Dependence and Abuse,
10. Eating-Related Problems and Disorders,
11. Adjustment and Stress Disorders,
12. Sexual Dysfunctions,
13. Sleep Disorders,
14. Problems of Impulse Control,
15. Dissociative Disorders: Disorders of Identity and Sense of Self,
16. Disorders of the Mind that Affect the Body,
17. Cognitive Disorders,
18. Suicidal Behavior,
19. Aggressive and Violent Behavior, and
20. Alzheimer's Disease.

The 19 personality disorder, bipolar disorder, adult attention disorder, depressive disorder, and psychotic disorder symptoms that appear to be exhibited by President Trump are highlighted in bold red.

1. Personality Disorders. Individuals with a personality disorder may:
1.A. Have persistent difficulties in various aspects of their lives
1.B. Be unable to get along with others or to form and maintain relationships
1.C. Tend to blame others, luck, or circumstances for whatever goes wrong
1.D. Repeatedly lie, try to manipulate others, or violate the law or social norms, with no remorse or guilt
1.E. Have poor control of their emotions and impulses, get involved in intense stormy relationships, and behave self-destructively
1.F. Crave constant attention and be extremely emotional and concerned with their appearance
1.G. Have a grandiose sense of self-importance and entitlement and need admiration
1.H. Desperately fear being alone, have an excessive need to be taken care of, and be submissive and clinging
1.I. Feel uncomfortable around other people, have low self-esteem, and be hyper sensitive to possible criticism or rejection
1.J. Be perfectionistic, preoccupied with details and orderliness, and concerned with control
1.K. Distrusts others, be extremely suspicious, and question the loyalty or trustworthiness of friends and associates without reason
1.L. Not enjoy or lack interest in social relationships and have a restricted range of emotional expression
1.M. Be acutely uncomfortable with close relationships, have distorted thoughts or perceptions, behave in odd or eccentric ways
If you or someone close to you demonstrates several of these symptoms, you may want to learn more about specific personality disorders.

2. Bipolar Disorders. A bipolar disorder is characterized by mood swings that include episodes of depression and of mania or hypomania. In addition to depression symptoms, individuals with bipolar illness may:
2.A. Feel unusual excitement, enthusiasm, energy, or irritability
2.B. Experience an uncharacteristic change in mood or functioning
2.C. Develop a sense of supreme self-confidence and inflated ability
2.D. Have grandiose thoughts and plans
2.E. Sleep very little and feel no need for more rest
2.F. Talk more than usual and feel a sense of pressure to keep talking
2.G. Think and talk rapidly, jumping from one idea to another
2.H. Be easily distracted by irrelevant or unimportant comments or events
2.I. Be physically and mentally restless
2.J. Noticeably increase their usual social, sexual, or work-related activities
2.K. Get involved in activities or pleasurable pursuits likely to lead to painful consequences such as sexual indiscretions, poor business investments, buying sprees, potentially dangerous sports or adventures
The more symptoms identified, the more reason to be concerned about bipolar illness.

3. Attention Disorders in Adults. Adults with attention disorders may:
3.A. Be restless and irritable
3.B. Not be able to concentrate on a focused activity like reading
3.C. Be distractable, forgetful, absent-minded
3.D. Find it difficult to wait; become extremely irritated when standing in line or stuck in traffic
3.E. Experience frequent mood swings
3.F. Be disorganized and have difficulty finishing projects or chores
3.G. Find it hard to solve problems or manage time
3.H. Be impulsive or reckless; make rash decisions
3.I. Have low tolerance for stress; be easily overwhelmed by ordinary hassles
3.J. Be clumsy
3.K. Have a poor body image
The more symptoms identified, the more reason there is to be concerned about a possible attention disorder.

4. Depressive Disorders. Individuals with a depressive disorder may:
4.A. Feel chronically depressed, sad, empty, discouraged, tearful
4.B. Lose interest or pleasure in once – enjoyable activities
4.C. Eat more or less than usual and either gain or lose weight
4.D. Have trouble sleeping or sleep much more than usual
4.E. Be tired and restless and lack energy
4.F. Feel helpless, hopeless, worthless
4.G. Find it hard to concentrate or focus attention
4.H. Become less effective or productive than in the past
4.I. Have difficulty in thinking clearly or making decisions
4.J. Be forgetful
4.K. Have persistent thoughts of death or suicide
4.L. Think poorly of themselves, put themselves down, feel inadequate
4.M. Brood about the past
4.N. Lack interest in sex or be less sexually active than usual
4.O. Withdraw from others
4.P. Develop physical symptoms such as headaches, digestive problems, aches and pains
The more symptoms identified, the more reason to be concerned about depressive disorders.

5. Schizophrenia and Other Psychotic Disorders. Individuals with schizophrenia or another psychotic disorder may:
5.A. See things, experience sensations, or hear voices and sounds that do not exist (hallucinations)
5.B. Persistently believe in fixed ideas despite proof that they are false (delusions)
5.C. Be unable to think in a logical manner (thought disorder)
5.D. Talk in rambling, disconnected, or incoherent ways
5.E. Make odd or purposeless movements; not talk or move at all
5.F. Repeat others’ words or mimic their gestures
5.G. Show few, if any, feelings; respond with inappropriate emotions
5.H. Lack will or motivation to complete a task or accomplish something
5.I. Function at a much lower level than in the past at work, in interpersonal relations, or in taking care of themselves
5.J. Develop symptoms of major depression or of mania (bipolar illness) along with other symptoms on this list
5.K. Have delusions involving real-life situations, such as that they are being followed, poisoned, infected, loved from a distance, or deceived by a spouse
Family members and close friends are often the first to notice that a loved one with psychotic symptoms is somehow not the same as before. The more symptoms identified the more reason there is to be concerned about schizophrenia or other psychotic disorders.

6. Anxiety Disorders. Individuals with anxiety disorders may:
6.A. Experience episodes of overwhelming fear, rapid heartbeat, chest pain, profuse sweating, trembling, shaking, and other distressing symptoms
6.B. Be afraid of losing control, going crazy, or dying during these attacks
6.C. Worry about developing embarrassing symptoms or being in a place or situation that would be difficult to leave
6.D. Avoid certain things, places, or situations because of anxiety
6.E. Fear a particular object or situation, or the prospect of confronting that object or situation
6.F. Worry about strangers’ observations and criticisms
6.G. Avoid or become extremely anxious in social situations
6.H. Avoid or be extremely anxious about performing in front of others
6.I. Have persistent feelings of anxiety, apprehension, restlessness, or irritability
6.J. Worry about a variety of events or activities
6.K. Find it hard to control their worrying
6.L. Develop problems in concentrating
6.M. Have physical symptoms, such as muscle tension
6.N. Have problems in falling or staying asleep
The more of these symptoms identified the more reason to be concerned about anxiety disorders – especially if they have persisted for six months or more; or are interfering with routines, work, other activities, or relationships.

7. Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder. Individuals with an obsessive-compulsive disorder may:
7.A. Experience senseless, upsetting, or bizarre thoughts or images
7.B. Repeatedly try but invariably fail to ignore or block troubling thoughts
7.C. Worry excessively about dirt, germs, or contamination
7.D. Be afraid of losing or giving away something that may be important
7.E. Feel compelled to think certain thoughts or perform certain acts repeatedly
7.F. Wash or clean excessively
7.G. Check things repeatedly to make sure they are done
7.H. Do the same thing over and over again
7.I. Keep useless things because they think they may need them someday
7.J. Spend more than an hour a day on odd thoughts or behaviors
7.K. Feel upset of embarrassed because of these thoughts or behaviors
7.L. Find it difficult to carry on normal daily routines because of intrusive thoughts or the need to perform certain acts repeatedly
The more symptoms identified, the more reason to be concerned about obsessive-compulsive disorder.

8. Substance Dependence and Abuse. Individuals with a substance dependence or abuse disorder may:
8.A. Use more of an illegal drug or a prescription medication or use a drug for a longer period of time than they desire or intend
8.B. Try repeatedly and unsuccessfully to cut down or control their drug use
8.C. Spend a great deal of time getting drugs, taking them, or recovering from their use
8.D. Be so "high" or feel so bad after drug use that they often cannot do their jobs or fulfill other responsibilities
8.E. Give up or cut back on important social, work, or recreational activities because of drug use
8.F. Continue to use drugs even though they realize that they are causing or worsening physical or mental problems
8.G. Use more and more of a drug to achieve a "high" or desired effect, or feel fewer such effects than in the past
8.H. Use drugs in dangerous ways or situations
8.I. Experience repeated drug-related legal problems, such as arrests for possession
8.J. Continue to use drugs even though they cause or worsen social or personal problems, such as arguments with a spouse
8.K. Develop hand tremors or other withdrawal symptoms if they cut down or stop drug use
8.L. Take drugs to relieve or avoid withdrawal symptoms
The more symptoms identified, the more reason there is to be concerned about drug use.

9. Alcohol Dependence and Abuse. Individuals with alcohol dependence or abuse disorders may:
9.A. Drink more or drink for a longer period of time than they desire or intend
9.B. Attempt, once if not more often, to cut down or control their drinking
9.C. Spend a great deal of time obtaining alcohol, drinking, or recovering from drinking
9.D. Frequently become so drunk or feel so bad after drinking that they cannot do their jobs or fulfil their responsibilities at home or work
9.E. Give up or cut back on important social, work, or recreational activities because of drinking
9.F. Continue to drink even though they realize that alcohol is causing or worsening physical or mental problems
9.G. Drink a lot more than in the past in order to achieve intoxication or drink more but feel less intoxicated than in the past
9.H. Drink in dangerous ways or situations, such as before driving
9.I. Repeatedly have alcohol-related legal problems, such as drunk driving arrests
9.J. Continue to drink even though alcohol causes or worsens social, or personal problems, such as arguments with a spouse
9.K. Develop hand tremors or other withdrawal symptoms if they cut down or stop drinking
9.L. Drink to relieve or avoid withdrawal symptoms
The more symptoms identified, the more reason to be concerned about alcohol use.

10. Eating-Related Problems and Disorders. Individuals with and eating-related problem or disorder may:
10.A. Diet frequently or constantly be concerned about weight
10.B. Repeatedly go on binges or eat unusually large amounts of food
10.C. Find it hard to control how much they eat
10.D. Repeatedly eat much more rapidly than usual, eat until uncomfortably full, or eat even when not hungry
10.E. Eat throughout the day rather than at regular mealtimes
10.F. Eat alone due to embarrassment about how or how much they eat
10.G. Lose at least 15% of ideal weight
10.H. Be extremely fearful of gaining weight or becoming fat, even if underweight
10.I. Have a distorted body image; feel fat even when very thin or emaciated
10.J. Miss at least three menstrual cycles (in women of childbearing age)
10.K. Regularly induce vomiting or use laxatives to prevent weight gain
10.L. Binge and purge at least twice a week for three months
10.M. Feel significant distress or impaired ability to work, function, or relate to others normally because of their eating behavior
The more symptoms identified, the more reason there is to be concerned about eating behavior.

11. Adjustment and Stress Disorders. Individuals with an adjustment or a stress disorder may:
11.A. Develop emotional or behavioral symptoms after a stressful event or major life change in the previous three months
11.B. Feel greater than expected distress or impairment as a result of these symptoms
11.C. Be involved in or witness a traumatic event that threatens life or safety and that triggers intense fear, helplessness, or horror
11.D. Feel emotionally numb or detached, or lack emotional responsiveness
11.E. Become less aware of their surroundings
11.F. Sense themselves or their environment as strange, unreal, or dreamlike
11.G. Be unable to recall an important aspect of the traumatic event|
11.H. Re-experience a trauma in various ways, such as recurrent images, upsetting dreams, or flashbacks
11.I. Feel extreme distress triggered by anything that symbolizes, resembles, or precipitates a memory of the traumatic event
11.J. Deliberately avoid any person, place, or activity that reminds them of the trauma
11.K. Have difficulty sleeping, be restless or irritable, have problems concentrating, be hyper alert, have exaggerated responses to sudden sounds
11.L. Show less interest or participate less in significant activities
11.M. Feel detached or estranged from others
11.N. Be incapable of certain emotions, such as tender feelings
11.O. Sense that they will not live a normal life span
11.P. Feel great distress or impairment in work, studying, relating to others, or engaging in their usual activities
The more symptoms identified, the more reason there is to be concerned about adjustment and stress-related disorders.

12. Sexual Dysfunctions. Individuals with a sexual dysfunction may:
12.A. Experience a decline in sexual pleasure or feel less satisfied with a sexual relationship
12.B. Feel less interested in sexual activity or fantasy than previously
12.C. Experience a numbing or lessening of usual sexual responses
12.D. Feel distress, frustration, or anxiety as a result of a sexual problem
12.E. Have difficulty in an intimate relationship because of a sexual problem
12.F. Not achieve orgasm during intercourse
12.G. Feel repeated or persistent discomfort, burning, irritation, or pain before, during, or after intercourse
12.H. Become preoccupied with a special sexual fantasy
12.I. Not be able to attain or maintain an adequate erection throughout sexual activity (for men)
12.J. Be unable to control or delay ejaculation (for men)
12.K. Experience decreased vaginal lubrication that interferes with sexual intercourse (for women)
12.L. Experience involuntary spasms of the vaginal muscles that make penetration by a penis difficult or impossible (for women)
The more symptoms identified, the more reason there is to be concerned about sexual dysfunction.

13. Sleep Disorders. Individuals with a sleep disorder may:
13.A. Have difficulty falling or staying asleep
13.B. Not feel refreshed or restored by sleep
13.C. Be extremely drowsy in the daytime
13.D. Be unable to resist daytime sleep attacks and loose muscle control during them
13.E. Experience vivid hallucinations or be unable to move major muscles while waking up or falling asleep
13.F. Have a mismatch between their work schedules and usual sleep-wake times because of travel or shift work
13.G. Not be able to fall asleep or wake up at typical or desired times
13.H. Have extremely frightening dreams
13.I. Suddenly wake up screaming in the night, with no recollection of a bad dream
13.J. Repeatedly sleepwalk, with no memory of the episode the next day
13.K. Feel great distress or interference with usual routines, relationships, and performance at work or school due to sleep difficulties
The more symptoms identified, the more reason there is to be concerned about sleep difficulties, especially if problems persist for more than a month.

14. Problems of Impulse Control. Individuals with an impulse control disorder may:
14.A. Be preoccupied with a potentially harmful activity, such as gambling, stealing, hair-pulling, fire-setting, or physically hurting themselves
14.B. Devote increase time or energy to this activity
14.C. Feel tense or aroused before giving in to an impulse
14.D. Find it very hard to resist the impulse
14.E. Feel immediate pleasure, relief, release, or gratification after giving in to the impulse
14.F. Forego time for family or work for the sake of this activity
14.G. Jeopardize personal relationships or jobs
14.H. Risk serious consequences, such as bankruptcy or imprisonment
14.I. Become restless or irritable if they do not give in to the impulse
14.J. Try but fail to control or stop their impulsive behavior
The more symptoms identified, the more reason there is to be concerned about a possible impulse control disorder.

15. Dissociative Disorders: Disorders of Identity and Sense of Self. Individuals with a dissociative disorder may:
15.A. Develop two or more distinct, unique, enduring identities that repeatedly take control of behavior
15.B. Be unable to recall certain important information
15.C. Find themselves in strange places or situations, with no memory of how they got there
15.D. Experience distortions or lapses in time
15.E. Be unable to remember events or behaviors that others tell them about
15.F. Discover letters, diaries, or possessions that are supposedly theirs but that they do not recognize or cannot account for
15.G. Not remember a traumatic or stressful experience or some aspect of it
15.H. Travel suddenly away from home or work
15.I. Be confused about personal identity
15.J. Repeatedly feel detached from the mind or body, as though they are observing themselves
15.K. Perceive objects as changing size or shape
15.L. Sense that other people seem dead, fake, or mechanical
15.M. Experience significant distress or impairment in their usual functioning, activities, or relationships
The more symptoms identified, the more reason there is to be concerned about a possible dissociative disorder.

16. Disorders of the Mind that Affect the Body. Individuals with a mental disorder that affects their physical well-being may:
16.A. Continually worry about having a serious physical illness, even though medical evaluations show no signs of a problem
16.B. Believe that a part of their body is ugly or grossly abnormal, although others see nothing wrong
16.C. Be extremely self-conscious about a slight physical imperfection, such as a birthmark or mole
16.D. Develop one or more extremely distressing or disabling physical complaints that have no known medical basis
16.E. Have a number of persistent physical complaints that begin before the age of 30 and have no known physical basis
16.F. Develop an unexplained neurological symptom, such as impaired vision, hearing, swallowing, or movement
16.G. Intentionally feign physical or psychological symptoms in themselves or another person
If any of these symptoms are identified, the problem may be a somatoform disorder – a mental condition involving physical concerns or symptoms.

17. Cognitive Disorders. Individuals with a cognitive disorder, such as delirium, dementia, or amnesia, may:
17.A. Not be fully aware of their surroundings
17.B. Find it difficult to focus, concentrate, or shift attention
17.C. Become disoriented about time, day, date, or location
17.D. Show fluctuations in alertness and awareness over the course of a day
17.E. Not be able to learn new material or to remember information about the past
17.F. Speak in rambling, disorganized ways
17.G. Not be capable of performing simple tasks, even though comprehension and motor skill seem fine
17.H. Not be able to recognize and identify everyday objects
17.I. Find it difficult to plan, organize, put things into sequence, or comprehend abstract concepts
17.J. No longer function normally
Because cognitive disorders interfere with the ability to think and to perceive what it happening, the persons affected may not be able to recognize symptoms in themselves. If several symptoms that describe troubling changes are observed in someone close to you, there may be reason to be concerned about cognitive impairment.

18. Suicidal Behavior. An individual at risk for attempting suicide may:
18.A. Feel intense hopelessness
18.B. Have very low self-esteem
18.C. Feel sad and depressed, and may lose interest in favorite activities
18.D. Drink more than usual or take drugs
18.E. Have recently lost or broken up with someone important
18.F. Dramatically change eating, drinking, and sleep patterns
18.G. Become very moody
18.H. Suddenly seem calm or peaceful
18.I. Talk about suicide
18.J. Be preoccupied with death
18.K. Not function as well as usual at school, or on the job
18.L. Withdraw from friends
18.M. Withdraw from usual activities
18.N. Neglect personal appearance
18.O. Find it difficult to concentrate
18.P. Develop physical symptoms, such as headache or fatigue
18.Q. Feel overwhelming guilt or shame
18.R. Become violent, hostile, or rebellious (especially in young people)
18.S. Have recently been discharged from a hospital for psychiatric treatment
The more symptoms identified, the more reason to be concerned about the threat of suicide.

19. Aggressive and Violent Behavior. Individuals with aggressive symptoms requiring treatment may:
19.A. Frequently shout in anger or make loud noises
19.B. Yell personal insults
19.C. Use foul language or curse viciously
19.D. Threaten violence toward themselves or others
19.E. Slam doors, deliberately throw clothing on the floor
19.F. Throw objects or kick furniture or walls
19.G. Break objects or smash windows
19.H. Set fires or destroy property in other ways
19.I. Pick or scratch at their skin, pull their hair, hit themselves
19.J. Bang their heads, throw themselves onto the floor, slam their fists into objects
19.K. Mutilate themselves with cuts, bites, or burns
19.L. Swing at people or physically threaten them
19.M. Strike, kick, or push others
19.N. Attack others, causing mild to severe injury
Even identifying a single symptom may indicate a possible problem requiring evaluation. The more symptoms identified the more reason to be concerned.

20. Alzheimer's Disease. Individuals who develop memory loss and personality changes that differ from normal age-related memory problems may have:
20. A. Problems with short-term and long-term memory
20. B. Problems with decision-making, problem solving and judgment
20.C. Difficulty producing or understanding language
20.D. Loss of spatial abilities (difficulty judging shapes and sizes and the relationship of objects in space)
20.E. Personality and behavior changes (depression, apathy, withdrawal from usual activities)
20.F. Apathy (passive behavior, sleeping more than usual or not wanting to do usual activities)
20.G. Loss of ability to learn new information
20.H. Confusion with time and place (getting lost in familiar places)
The presence of any or all of these symptoms is not a sure indicator of Alzheimer's disease; a complete examination by a physician is required.

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This page was last updated on 09/03/17.