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Related Articles Symptomatology and the Novel. Related Topics object psychoanalysi new york subject politic symptom. Related Book Chapters Psychoanalysis. Symptom and Discourse. The symptom is also distinct from anxiety. Anxiety is far noisier than the symptom, though it is also closely related. Anxiety sounds the alarm that leads from a sense of urgency to the symptom. In fact, the symptom appears to be extinguishing the fires of anxiety, but it does not possess the means to accomplish this.

More precisely, the symptom puts an end to anxiety by organizing a new situation different from the one that triggered the anxiety. Thus the symptom corrects the inadequate internal discharge of anxiety by offering the psyche other possibilities for linking and representation.

Child psychoanalysis and obsessive-compulsive symptoms: the treatment of a ten-year-old boy.

The new situation defines the nature of the symptom and indicates its scope. In the end, it is the drive that constitutes the symptom, and this is why Freud distinguished between symptom and inhibition d []. When repression fails, the drive can break through, but repression has sufficient power to divert it. Thus, the symptom is formed as a compromise. At one level, the compromise concerns the censorship between the unconscious or preconscious and consciousness. At another level, there is a conflict between the different agencies, with the superego taking the organizing role. Later Freud argued that the conflict between the ego and the id defines neurosis, while that between the ego and reality characterizes psychosis b [].

Thus the course that the symptom takes always depends on the unconscious. Eventually, the play of affect and representation get the better of repression. This happens with the conversion hysteric, who suffers from quasi innervation because she marks her own body with an affect that has regressed to its original state as action.

Thereafter, every fantasy is converted into a symptom that is incapacitating, but comfortable. Soon this same process is projected by a phobia and frozen in a representation, which leaves a gap in affect that is filled by anxiety Freud, d, e. Because of the ambivalence of desire and defense, the symptom that the ego has established in a state of "extraterritoriality" d [], p. The defensive rituals of the obsessional become similarly eroticized by invading thought.

The unacknowledged meaning of personal experiences can influence our mood and behaviour, and contribute to problems with relationships, work and self-esteem. Conditions treated by psychoanalysis Some of the problems treated by psychoanalysis include: Depression Generalised anxiety Sexual problems Self-destructive behaviour Persistent psychological problems, disorders of identity Psychosomatic disorders Phobias Obsessive compulsive disorders. The unconscious mind According to psychoanalysis, the unconscious mind gives hints of the unacknowledged meaning of experiences in different ways.

Such hints may include: Repetitive behaviours Topics that the person finds difficult to talk about Dreams Daydreams The nature of the patient—therapist relationship. Psychoanalysis and psychotherapy Psychotherapy is an umbrella term, which describes any form of treatment of the mind.


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The patient—therapist relationship Psychoanalysis is a close relationship. The psychotherapy session Regular treatment is needed to develop the closeness and intimacy required for this form of self-exploration. Rubin and E. Send us your feedback. Rate this website Your comments Questions Your details. Excellent Good Average Fair Poor.

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