The simplest way to Conceptualize a Psychiatric disorder is a Disturbance of Cognition (thought), Conation (action), and Affect (feelings/emotions) or any disequilibrium between three domains. A Psychiatric Disorder should be a manifestation of behavioral, psychological, and /or Biological dysfunction of that Person.
Classification is the Process by which phenomenon are organized into categories. Classification of psychiatric disorders, are syndromal. A syndrome is defined as a group of symptoms and signs that often occur together, and delineate a recognizable clinical condition.
There are three major purposes of classification of psychiatric disorders:
- To enable Communication regarding the diagnosis of disorders,
- To Facilitate comprehension of the underlying causes of these disorders, and
- To aid Prediction of the prognosis of psychiatric disorders.
The Syndromal approach of classification ,in the absence of clearly known a etiologies, fulfils these purposes reasonably well.