1. Looking at Abnormal Behavior
The program visits the Jackson Memorial Hospital Crisis Center in Miami, where suicidal,
depressed, and schizophrenic patients meet with psychologists, psychiatrists, and social workers
to assess the nature and seriousness of their problems. It also introduces the various theories
used to explain and treat abnormal behavior.
2. The Nature of Stress
We see that stress affects many people — from the overworked and out-of-work, to survivors of suicide and homicide, to Vietnam War veterans who continually re-experience the stress of the battlefield. The program explores the long-term effects of stress and what is known about how to reduce them.
3. The Anxiety Disorders
Even in the best of times, we all experience some anxiety. But millions of Americans suffer from
major anxiety disorders. This program examines two of the most common, panic with
agoraphobia and generalized anxiety disorder, and shows how psychologists are making
headway in treating them.
4. Psychological Factors and Physical Illness
This program examines the relationship between emotions and health to explore how
psychological treatment can improve well-being. It focuses on a teenager with migraine
headaches, a dentist trying to decrease his risk for developing heart disease, and a woman with
breast cancer, along with those who are treating them.
5. Personality Disorders
One in ten Americans has a personality disorder. Some are mildly annoying; others are
exceedingly dangerous. Viewers will meet individuals with narcissistic, anti-social, borderline,
and obsessive-compulsive personality disorders, including a murderer and a group of women
who mutilate themselves, and will learn about the challenges involved in both diagnosis and
6. Substance Abuse Disorders
Millions of Americans abuse alcohol, cigarettes, and cocaine. Health professionals know a great
deal about these dangerous and costly disorders, including how to treat them. This program
examines how the concept of treatment matching is used to help individuals overcome a variety
7. Sexual Disorders
A man exhibits himself in public. A woman feels guilty about not desiring sex. An otherwise
happy couple finds themselves at odds over sex. These people share their private problems and
demonstrate how the assessment and treatment of sexual disorders has advanced in the past 25
8. Mood Disorders
Depression is one of the most common psychological problems. In this program, psychologists
and biologists look at the causes and treatment of both depression and bipolar disorder and show
the progress that has been made in helping people return to productive and satisfying lives.
9. The Schizophrenias
In emotionally moving interviews, this program visits people who suffer from the hallucinations,
paranoia, and psychological disarray of these disabling illnesses. In addition to examining
symptoms and treatments, the program helps debunk some of the myths associated with the
disorder and shows its human side and the strength of those who fight to overcome it.
10. Organic Mental Disorders
A teenager must relearn all the basic skills following a head injury. After years of alcohol abuse,
a man loses his short-term memory. A woman sees her husband struggle against the ravages of
Alzheimer's disease. Science and technology's role in treating these debilitating disorders is also
examined in this program.
11. Behavior Disorders of Childhood
Almost all parents worry whether or not their child's behavior is normal. This program visits
families of youngsters with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorder, separation
anxiety disorder, and autism. In addition, experts in child development and psychology discuss
how to differentiate abnormal behavior from developmental stages.
This program allows viewers to "sit-in" on five distinctly different kinds of psychotherapy:
psychodynamic, cognitive-behavioral, Gestalt, couples, and group. Theory and practice are
intertwined as these patients progress through therapy, sometimes trying alternative models for
the same problem.
13. An Ounce of Prevention
Imagine a society whose citizens are protected from psychological disorders. This final episode visits several programs that are attempting to eliminate known risk factors — including social isolation and inadequate parenting skills — that often lead to serious disorders. The stories are touching; the results are promising.