Total Institution Essay

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Through the examination of total institutions and the effects deinstitutionalization, it is apparent that those with mental illness would best benefit from community programs such as the Supported Housing project.
Total Institutions By the end of the 1800s there was a movement to treat those with mental illness more humanely with the use of psychiatry/psychology and religion, as well as an emphasis on the belief that there was a cure that could be found through treatments. This shift in belief lead to psychiatric facilities that provided long-term care of those with mental illnesses. These facilities were problematic because they intended to cure and treat those with mental illness but the institution prevented its patients from
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It is important to understand how these facilities were all encompassing for those within them, patients had no control over their lives and became dependent on the system to tell them when to sleep, eat, take medication, and so on. This lifestyle changes the self identity of residents because it strips away any previous identity they had before entering the institution and builds them up in a new image. This is done by standardizing individuals (giving them a new identifier, taking away person belongings, etc.) and then giving them rules to indicate they lack power or authority (asking for small things such …show more content…
Gotham (1961) further describes how these individuals had “total exposure” in that they had no separation between private and social environments. This is done through exposing them emotionally through coerced therapy, physically through shared washrooms, strip searches, and mandatory uniforms, as well as socially through hared rooms, and finally with relationships with loved ones/friends by reading mail, censoring letters, etc. By living in such an environment it is obvious that individuals would have difficulty re-entering society. In a psychiatric facility a patient has all aspects of their lives controlled and monitored and their lives revolve around the facility so leaving becomes very difficult to adjust to. Furthermore, living within this institution stigmatizes individuals in that society views though who have been in a psychiatric institution as different and that their individual character is lacking. By making those within psychiatric facilities dependent on the facility and by stigmatising those within them, these facilities were acting against their main goal to treat and cure those with a mental illness.
Effects of Deinstitutionalization With such problems within psychiatric facilities it is not a surprise that people wanted to take individuals out

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