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Two people looking at computers with brain images with an imaging equipment room in the background.
Figure 21.1 The etiology of psychological and mental health disorders can be multifaceted, ranging from genetic and biological to environmental; often, specific causes are a combination of the types of factors or remain a mystery. (credit: “National Nurses Week: Capt. Stephanie Smiddy” by Staff Sgt. Shane Hughes/Air Force Medical Service, Public Domain)

Somatic symptom and related disorders are fascinating areas of study in the field of psychiatric-mental health nursing, illustrating the complexities of the relationship between mind and body. These disorders encompass a range of conditions where physical symptoms manifest without a clear medical explanation, leading to distress and impairment in daily functioning. By delving into the world of somatic symptom and related disorders, nursing students can gain valuable insights into the delicate interplay between physical health and psychological well-being. These conditions challenge understanding of the mind-body connection. It is the nurse’s responsibility to provide holistic care that encompasses both the physical and psychological dimensions of health. This way, nurses can develop the knowledge and skills necessary to approach clients with empathy, respect, and a comprehensive understanding of their unique struggles.


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