Changes Made From DSM IV to DSM-5

Changes that were made from DSM IV to DSM-5 are many and some include the changes for some mental conditions to other groups. some of the changes are:

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder was changed to trauma and stress related disorders from anxiety disorders in DSM-IV (APA, 2013). The stressor regarding PTSD has been further expounded and it not only that which have been experienced or witnessed but that which is related to loved ones who encountered accidents or violence.
  • Communication disorders have changed to include speech sound and language disorder. Stuttering children is further changed to childhood onset fluency disorder and social cognitive disorder, which is new in DSM-5.
  • Autism spectrum disorder is another new change in DSM-5. The decisions were reached when the scientific community reached an agreement on the four disorders being merged to one in autism spectrum disorder. The disorders were previously pervasive mental disorder, childhood disintegrative disorder, Asperger’s disorder and autism.

DSM-5 in making diagnosis has brought about myriad changes that boost the diagnosis of mental conditions or disorders. It has led to simplification in nosology. DSM-5 has enabled the moving away of causal attribution. Dimensional measures have been stressed in dealing with severity. Since DSM-IV, here has been an incorporation in clinical and main scientific procedures. Lifestyle issues and developments have been stressed as result to further help diagnosis of mental conditions (Kim et al., 2014). All the above measures help in ensuring that diagnosis is done accordingly and quickly. DSM-5 has brought about myriad changes, which have further enabled the medical fraternity to have a concise understanding about new conditions and further introducing new perspectives in diagnosing various conditions.

Some of the critical questions to ask clients involve the referral question. The referral question takes to determine what the patient is seeking and what treatment can thus be administered. The clinician in this regard needs to have the theoretical background to understand the answers given to the referral question. Questions in this regard are asked in accordance with silence, cultural sensitivity, cross techniques and non directive approach. How culture affects the work when dealing with clients can be one of the questions.

Making a correct diagnosis is quite important as a counsellor. The beginning of the interview clinicians should seek to give assessment procedures and to further follow up on the treatment options given to the patients. Comprehensive diagnosis of the treatment is done to ensure that the diagnosed symptoms are dealt with. Symptoms that are crosscutting are further dealt with in two measures. The first level mostly uses brief screening to determine the problem affecting the patient. Some of the conditions screened are substance use and personality functioning, behaviors and thoughts that are repetitive, memory, sleep problems, suicidal ideation, somatic symptoms, mania, anger and depression among others. Adolescents and children are taken through twelve domains to find out the problem affecting them. Level two measures further help in providing a thorough assessment from the level one diagnosis. It seeks to provide a differential diagnosis to ensure that the patients are not misdiagnosed. To ensure that the client is not misdiagnosed I will pass through the level one and two measures and use the answers given to come up with the right diagnosis. Furthermore, in preventing a misdiagnosis, I would consider writing down each symptoms and obtaining past medical records of the patients to get more information about the condition the patients is passing through. A misdiagnosis is dangerous since it leads to treatment measures that are not dealing with the condition that is affecting a client.


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