Academic journal article Indian Journal of Psychiatry

Resilience: A Psychobiological Construct for Psychiatric Disorders

Academic journal article Indian Journal of Psychiatry

Resilience: A Psychobiological Construct for Psychiatric Disorders

Article excerpt

Byline: Amresh. Shrivastava, Avinash. Desousa

Understanding of psychopathology of mental disorder is evolving, particularly with availability of newer insight from the field of genetics, epigenetics, social, and environmental pathology. It is now becoming clear how biological factors are contributing to development of an illness in the face of a number of psychosocial factors. Resilience is a psychobiological factor which determines individual's response to adverse life events. Resilience is a human capacity to adapt swiftly and successfully to stressful/traumatic events and manage to revert to a positive state. It is fundamental for growth of positive psychology which deals with satisfaction, adaptability, contentment, and optimism in people's life. Of late, there has been a paradigm shift in the understanding of resilience in context of stress risk vulnerability dimension. It is a neurobiological construct with significant neurobehavioral and emotional features which plays important role in deconstructing mechanism of biopsychosocial model of mental disorders. Resilience is a protective factor against development of mental disorder and a risk factor for a number of clinical conditions, e.g. suicide. Available information from scientific studies points out that resilience is modifiable factor which opens up avenues for a number of newer psychosocial as well as biological therapies. Early identification of vulnerable candidates and effectiveness of resilience-based intervention may offer more clarity in possibility of prevention. Future research may be crucial for preventive psychiatry. In this study, we aim to examine whether resilience is a psychopathological construct for mental disorder.

INTRODUCTION

Resilience is the capacity people have to adapt swiftly and successfully to stressful/traumatic events while not reverting to the original state. Resilience is described as an evolving process influenced by a variety of biological, social, and environmental factors. [sup][1] The growing evidence supports the notion that resilience is involved in the development of positive psychological traits. [sup][2] Various studies have illustrated the critical role of resilience on the individuals' capacity to form a healthy response while enduring trauma, and this has been noted across all ages. [sup][3] Human beings have the capacity to protect themselves and deal with the adverse events or stimulus, which can challenge their psychobiological homeostasis. It is in this respect that resilience emerges as a factor which contributes as a defense mechanism and a protective factor. [sup][2] Resilience is a construct that may be involved in psychopathological process for mental disorder; [sup][2] it also mediates stress response of trauma; [sup][4] therefore, high level of resilience works a protective factor and lower level of resilience increases vulnerability for developing pathological consequences of adverse environmental events. [sup][5] Further, there is some evidence that indicate that resilience is modifiable, and this opens up possibility for novel therapeutic interventions. [sup][6],[7] Therefore, if it is the case, then enhancing resilience may open novel possibilities for treating and preventing various mental disorders. A number of factors have been used to explain the resilient response to adverse life situation, and recent development in psychosociology and neurobiology provides more insight into this problem. Of late, there has been a paradigm shift in the understanding resilience which determines stress-risk vulnerability dimension. In this paer, we examine whether resilience is a psychopathological construct for mental disorder. We first examine its correlates (i.e., psychosocial or neurobiological); then we will explore how mental disorders correlate to resilience. In addition, we seek to explain why resilience has a greater effect on some individuals when compared to others. Finally, we will investigate the implications and ramifications of resilience in a clinical setting. …

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