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How Do We Know What Is Normal? 

How Do We Know What Is Normal?
Chapter:
How Do We Know What Is Normal?
Author(s):

Joel Paris

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199350643.003.0011
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date: 27 May 2022

Medicine and psychiatry have not developed models that sufficiently acknowledge normal variations, and how these may relate to psychopathology. While normality can be defined in different ways, it is important to realize that people respond to life circumstances in ways that closely resemble mental disorders. The difference is that normal responses are either more transient, or reversible if circumstances change. The failure to recognize normative distress a leads to over-medicalization and over-treatment.

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