Neurosis

A chronic disorder featuring irritability of the nervous system (nervousness) and characterized by anxiety and/or extreme behavior dedicated to avoid anxiety situations.
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1. A psychological or behavioral disorder in which anxiety is the primary characteristic; defense mechanisms or any of the phobias are the adjustive techniques that an individual learns in order to cope with this underlying anxiety. In contrast to the psychoses, persons with a n. do not exhibit gross distortion of reality or disorganization of personality. 2. A functional nervous disease, or one for which there is no evident lesion. 3. A peculiar state of tension or irritability of the nervous system; any form of nervousness. SYN: neurotic disorder. [neuro- + G. -osis, condition]
- accident n. SYN: traumatic n..
- anxiety n. chronic abnormal distress and worry to the point of panic followed by a tendency to avoid or run from the feared situation, associated with overaction of the sympathetic nervous system.
- cardiac n. anxiety concerning the state of the heart, as a result of palpitation, chest pain, or other symptoms not due to heart disease; a form of hypochondriasis. SYN: cardioneurosis.
- character n. a subclass of personality disorders.
- combat n. battle fatigue, posttraumatic stress disorder.
- compensation n. the development of symptoms of n. believed to be motivated by the desire for, and hope of, monetary or interpersonal gain.
- compulsive n. SYN: obsessive-compulsive n..
- conversion n. SYN: conversion hysteria.
- conversion hysteria n. SYN: conversion hysteria.
- experimental n. a behavior disorder produced experimentally, as when an organism is required to make a discrimination of extreme difficulty and “breaks down” in the process.
- hysterical n. a bona fide disorder characterized by an alteration or loss of physical functioning, such as blurred vision, numbness or paralysis of limbs, coordination difficulties, etc., that suggests a physical disorder, but that instead is apparently an expression of a psychological conflict or need. Also called conversion disorder. SEE ALSO: hysteria.
- obsessional n. SYN: obsessive-compulsive n..
- obsessive-compulsive n. a disorder characterized by the persistent and repetitive intrusion of unwanted thoughts, urges, or actions that the individual is unable to prevent; the compulsive thoughts may consist of single words, ideas, or ruminations often perceived by the sufferer as nonsensical; the repetitive urges or actions vary from simple movements to complex rituals; anxiety or distress is the underlying emotion or drive state, and the ritualistic behavior is a learned method of reducing the anxiety. SEE ALSO: obsessive-compulsive disorder. SYN: compulsive n., obsessional n..
- oedipal n. continuation of the Oedipus complex into adulthood.
- pension n. a type of compensation n., motivated by the desire for premature retirement on pension.
- posttraumatic n. SYN: traumatic n..
- torsion n. SYN: dysbasia lordotica progressiva.
- transference n. in psychoanalysis, the phenomenon of the patient's developing a strong emotional relationship with the analyst, symbolizing an emotional relationship with a family figure; analysis of this n. constitutes an important part of psychoanalytic treatment.
- traumatic n. any functional nervous disorder following an accident or injury. See posttraumatic stress disorder. SYN: accident n., posttraumatic n..

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neu·ro·sis n(y)u̇-'rō-səs n, pl -ro·ses -.sēz a mental and emotional disorder that affects only part of the personality, is accompanied by a less distorted perception of reality than in a psychosis, does not result in disturbance of the use of language, and is accompanied by various physical, physiological, and mental disturbances (as visceral symptoms, anxieties, or phobias)

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n. (pl. neuroses)
any long-term mental or behavioural disorder in which contact with reality is retained and the condition is recognized by the sufferer as abnormal. A neurosis essentially features anxiety or behaviour exaggeratedly designed to avoid anxiety. Defence mechanisms against anxiety take various forms and may appear as phobias, obsessions, compulsions, or sexual dysfunctions. In recent attempts at classification, the disorders formerly included under the neuroses have been renamed. The general term is now anxiety disorder; hysteria has become conversion disorder; amnesia, fugue, multiple personality, and depersonalization are dissociative disorder; obsessional neurosis is now known as obsessive-compulsive disorder (see obsession)}}; and depressive neurosis has become dysthymic disorder (see depression) in DSM-IV. Psychoanalysis has proved of little value in curing these conditions and Freud's speculations as to their origins are not now widely accepted outside Freudian schools of thought. Neurotic disorders are probably best regarded as being the result of inappropriate early programming. <
neurotic adj.

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neu·ro·sis (n-roґsis) pl. neuroґses [neur- + -osis] 1. former name for a category of mental disorders characterized by anxiety and avoidance behavior. In general, the term refers to disorders in which the symptoms are distressing to the person, reality testing is intact, behavior does not violate gross social norms, and there is no apparent organic etiology. Classified in DSM-IV under anxiety disorders, dissociative disorders, mood disorders, sexual disorders, and somatoform disorders. 2. in psychoanalytic theory, the specific etiological process that gives rise not only to neuroses as defined above but also to personality disorders (formerly called character neuroses to emphasize this) and some psychotic disorders. Unconscious conflicts involving opposing wishes or forbidden infantile wishes give rise to an unconscious anticipation of danger (experienced as anxiety) in situations that activate a conflict, and anxiety serves as a signal to trigger unconscious defense mechanisms, the operation of which is visible to the conscious mind and to observers in the form of neurotic symptoms or pathological personality traits.

Medical dictionary. 2011.

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