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The Person with a Mental Illness




This chapter will deal with some of the ways a person in your care may step over the boundary between mental health and mental illness and behave in ways that make it difficult for you to assist them. In particular, personality disorders and schizophrenia will be explained in more detail. If a person is behaving in a way that is not acceptable or appropriate, something serious may be wrong. It is important for you to observe your client carefully, to use your knowledge of psychology to try to work out the causes of strange behavior and to gain informed insights about what might be the unconscious motivations for your client’s behavior. Your observations will assist you in making decisions about the best support you can provide your client and the professional assistance that may be needed.


Contents include

  • the carer and mental illness
  • recognising mental illness
  • schizophrenia
  • other psychotic disorders.
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Author / Editor Biographies

Carolyn Dixon was, from 1995 to early 1999, the psychiatric clinical nurse consultant in the Emergency Department of St Vincent's Hospital in Melbourne, Australia. Her work there began as a project to study the effectiveness of this innovative role. Carolyn is a trained psychiatric and general nurse who has worked in hospital, education and community settings both in Australia and overseas. It was while she was working as a nurse teacher at Royal Park Hospital in Melbourne that she first worked with Bernadette Keane. Carolyn has presented a number of conference papers on aspects of psychiatric...

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