Appreciated Robert Plomin discussion re: disorders

Fully recommend giving this episode of the Making Sense podcast, #211 – The Nature of Human Nature. It’s a great dialogue about the state and future of “molecular genetics” science. But in particular at about 1:10:25 an exchange of a few minutes touches on some points that seem to go underappreciated in #mentalhealth awarness. Blomin makes a comment “… there are no disorders. There are just quantitative dimensions… if there is no disorder there is nothing to cure… we’re alleviating symptoms rather than curing a disorder.” He raises a continuum vs. disease model being more applicable to mental ‘disorders’ (Blomin reluctantly uses this word and adds “the extremes of these dimensions” than is common practice and that “it’s really held back the field”.

I’ve always intuitively felt like this must be true, and struggled to have good conversations with people sensitive to more of a disease model, on mental health issues. The implications of this for treatment research and innovation are huge when the goals are incremental vs. binary. It shouldn’t be taboo to say you feel depressed or any laying claim to any number of conditions that have been owned by disorder labels. Caveat always being sympathy for people’s lives touched in very sad ways by the extreme ends of those dimensions is obviously super important.

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