Posted: February 9th, 2023

Week 4: Mood Disorders Across the Lifespan

PRAC – 6665 Week 4: Mood Disorders Across the Lifespan
Mood disorders, also known as affective disorders, are a group of mental health conditions characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and/or loss of interest in activities. These disorders can occur across the lifespan, affecting individuals of all ages, from children to older adults.
Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) is one of the most common mood disorders, characterized by persistent feelings of sadness, hopelessness, and a loss of interest in activities. MDD can occur at any age, but onset is most common in the late teenage years or early adulthood.
Bipolar disorder, also known as manic-depressive illness, is characterized by episodes of elevated or irritable mood (mania or hypomania) and depression. Bipolar disorder typically develops in late adolescence or early adulthood, but it can also occur in children and older adults.
Dysthymic disorder, also known as persistent depressive disorder, is a chronic form of depression characterized by persistent low mood and a loss of interest in activities for at least two years. Dysthymic disorder can occur at any age, but onset is most common in young adulthood.
Depression in Children and Adolescents is a serious condition that affects the way children think, feel and behave. They may have similar symptoms as adults but they express them differently, they may have more irritability, more anger, and more physical symptoms such as headaches and stomachaches.
Depression in older adults is a common condition that affects the physical and mental health of older adults. They may have different symptoms than younger adults, including feelings of worthlessness, memory problems, and fatigue.
Mood disorders can have a significant impact on an individual’s quality of life and can also lead to other health problems. Treatment for mood disorders typically involves a combination of therapy and medication. In some cases, electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) may also be used. Effective treatment can help individuals manage their symptoms and improve their overall well-being.
PRAC – 6665 Week 4: Mood Disorders Across the Lifespan

What do I have to do? When do I have to do it?
Review your Learning Resources. Days 1–7
Assignment: Clinical Hour and Patient Logs Record your clinical hours and patient encounters
in Meditrek by Day 7.
There is a strong likelihood that you will encounter both children/adolescents and adults at your practicum site who suffer from mood disorders. Depressive disorders, for instance, affect up to 3 percent of children and 8 percent of adolescents (Thapar et al., 2015). This increases in adulthood to a lifetime prevalence of up to 25% in women and 12% in men (Wang et al., 2017). Based on your prior work, you may have more experience working with adults. If this is the case, it is important to recognize that while mood disorders may appear across the lifespan, even in young children, the symptoms children and adolescents experience may be different from those present in adults. Seek out information from your current and prior Learning Resources and from your Preceptor to help guide your diagnosis of these disorders in different age groups.

This week, you review resources on assessing, diagnosing, and treating mood disorders across the lifespan. You also continue to record your clinical hours and patient encounters in Meditrek.

Thapar, A., Pine, D. S., Leckman, J. F., Scott, S., Snowling, M. J., & Taylor, E. A. (Eds.). (2015). Rutter’s child and adolescent psychiatry (6th ed.). Wiley Blackwell.
Wang, J., Wu, X., Lai, W., Long, E., Zhang, X., Li, W., Zhu, Y., Chen, C., Zhong, X., Liu, Z., Wang, D., & Lin, H. (2017). Prevalence of depression and depressive symptoms among outpatients: A systematic review and meta-analysis. BMJ Open, 7(8), e017173.

Learning Objectives
Students will:

Describe clinical hours and patient encounters
Learning Resources
Required Readings

Carlat, D. J. (2017). The psychiatric interview (4th ed.). Wolters Kluwer.

Chapter 23, “Assessing Mood Disorders I: Depressive Disorders”
Chapter 24, “Assessing Mood Disorders II: Bipolar Disorder”
Note: Use this link to log into Meditrek to report your clinical hours and patient encounters.

Stern, T. A., Fava, M., Wilens, T. E., & Rosenbaum, J. F. (2016). Massachusetts General Hospital psychopharmacology and neurotherapeutics. Elsevier.

Chapter 4, “Antidepressants”
Chapter 5, “Bipolar Disorder”
Chapter 8, “Lithium and Its Role in Psychiatry”
Chapter 9, “Use of Antiepileptic Drugs in Psychiatry”
Assignment: Clinical Hour and Patient Logs
Photo Credit: auremar / Adobe Stock

Clinical Hour Log
For this course, all practicum activity hours are logged within the Meditrek system. Hours completed must be logged in Meditrek within 48 hours of completion in order to be counted.
You may only log hours with Preceptors that are approved in Meditrek. Students with catalog years before Spring 2018 must complete a minimum of 576 hours of supervised clinical experience (144 hours in each practicum course). Students with catalog years beginning Spring 2018 must complete a minimum of 640 hours of supervised clinical experience (160 hours in each practicum course). PRAC – 6665 Week 4: Mood Disorders Across the Lifespan

Each log entry must be linked with an individual practicum Learning Objective or a graduate Program Objective. You should track your hours in Meditrek as they are completed.

Your clinical hour log must include the following:

Clinical Faculty
Total Time (for the day)
Notes/Comments (including the objective to which the log entry is aligned)
Patient Log
Throughout this course, you will also keep a log of patient encounters using Meditrek. You must record at least 80 encounters with patients by the end of this practicum (40 children/adolescents and 40 adult/older adult).

The patient log must include the following:

Clinical Faculty
Patient Number
Client Information
Visit Information
Practice Management
Treatment Plan and Notes: You must include a brief summary/synopsis of the patient visit. This does not need to be a SOAP note, however the note needs to be sufficient to remember your patient encounter.
By Day 7 of Week 4

Record your clinical hours and patient encounters in Meditrek.

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