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Erickson’s Psychological Health Assessment

Erickson’s Psychological Health Assessment
Erikson’s Psychosocial Health Assessment
Erikson’s psychosocial theory is popular because it goes beyond psychoanalysis, since
Erickson was a humanitarian. There is a great similarity between Freud’s psychosexual theory
and Erikson’s psychosocial theory. Erickson significantly combined cultural and social facets of
life. Erickson was able to do this due to the passion and compassion he had for people. His
research was among human societies far isolated from the more restricted world of the
psychoanalyst’s seat, which was Freud’s study methodology (Walkerdine, 2003). Erickson was
highly interested in childhood development and the effects this had on adult society. The
psychological development stages characterized by Erickson dwell on the social aspect of the
human psyche and the role of different types interaction one may need in life.
Autonomy vs. Doubt and Shame
It happens in the early stage of childhood. It entails the development of a better sense of
personal control over children. At this stage, the child cultivates some sense of freedom. They
perform some independent actions and make simple decisions about their interests. Giving the
child a chance to make decisions on his or her own grows a sense of independence. Toilet
training is therefore crucial for this stage. Erickson argues that the learning of exercising selfcontrol
leads to a feeling of restraint and a sense of freedom. The child gains self-control over the
inclination towards toys and one’s outfit collection. Children who complete this stage
productively have a habit of feeling secure and self-confident. Erickson supposed that realizing
an equilibrium between independence, embarrassment, and uncertainty leads to a belief that
children can act with purpose, within motives and confines. Success at this stage causes a sense
of determination (Walkerdine, 2003). Caregivers teach children how to brush their teeth and how
to wash their hands. If their teeth are not taken good care of, cavities are common. The child
progresses from breastfeeding to using cups and other utensils. They tend to eat cereals a lot.
Allergies can be noted in the toddler and he or she may throw up when fed. It is common
because of a low level of vitamins. And if the toddler is given a bottle of juice or milk before
bedtime, dental problems will arise. This is the stage when toilet training is introduced, and if the
child is hurriedly taken through or harassed, it results into fixation.
The toddler discovers new activities with learning; therefore, he or she progresses from
making his or her first steps to walking. Injuries are consequently common, since they are
learning about their new environment. The toddler gains a good knowledge of the original
objects they learn about. At this stage, a toddler needs a bedtime routine—for example, bathing.
An overtired toddler during the day tends to be less active. The toddler’s response is according to
what he or she hears, and he or she should learn his or her name, feeding himself or herself, and
walking. If the toddler fails to respond to his or her name, he or she might have sensory
problems. Masturbation is normal at this stage. The toddler tends to be cautious of his or her
body and how it functions. At this stage, toddlers manage to hold onto their parents due to fear.
They also tend to learn right and wrong from their homes.
The Stage of Initiative Versus Feeling Guilty
This stage presents itself to preschoolers. Children at this stage begin to emphasize their
influence and governance over the world through role-playing and guiding plays. Here, success
leads to a sense of perseverance. Preschoolers can communicate to an adult when they feel sick.
They get educated enough to know their bodily functions. If a child’s immune system is not
stable, it can lead to a child getting infected. The child helps in meal preparation. Obesity and
being overweight depends on the food given to the child.
In addition, toilet training is vital at this stage. If a child is not well trained, he or she
might fail to wash hands or flush the toilet after use. Plus, playing with fictional friends is
common at this stage. Social problems later in life are associated to children who play alone
during this stage. A child tends to ask more questions about anything. Therefore, they tend to
have a lousy memory since they learn a lot. Nightmares are frequent, and some are unable to
sleep; consequently, they tend to be less active during the day.
The child dresses himself or herself since he or she develops preferences. The child starts
being sensitive when others condemn him or her. He or she understands gender differences
concerning jobs. He or she gets curious about the opposite gender. The child might tend to
daydream and withdraw if he or she does not want to adhere to instructions given to him or her.
He or she attend church and uphold his or her parent’s religious beliefs. Watching negative
things on television lends to a negative influence on their behaviors and actions.
Industry vs. Inferiority
This stage takes place during the early school years between 5-11 years. The child begins
to grow a sense of pride in his or her accomplishments and capabilities. Children who are
encouraged by either his or her parents or teachers develop a feeling of competency and
confidence in his or her expertise. Self-confidence and competence develops to make the
children handle some tasks. Success at this stage results in the sense of power.
Children at this point are interested in their bodily functions, and understand the
importance of health. Furthermore, they know when they are ill and when they need care.
Culture dramatically influences their view on health and illness. Nurses may discover that a child
may tend to care about his or her appearance or hygiene. If parents follow poor sanitation, the
child tends to copy them (Erickson, Jones, & Ditomassi, 2012).
A child at this stage tends to get hurt a lot and may require dental care, which depends on
the parent’s seriousness about health. They start to know about unhealthy and healthy foods.
Skipping meals and eating unhealthy foods leads to obesity. They have similar elimination
patterns to those of adults. They complain about urination and pain during elimination due to
constipation. In addition, they participate in as many activities as possible. Children at this age
feel psychological pressure depending on their parents’ and coaches’ behavior.
They begin to understand new things; learning should be taken care of to avoid problems
related to it. The child experiences sleep talking and walking. Parents should observe them to
prevent injuries related to sleepwalking. Furthermore, children care about their appearance.
Those who have disabilities tend to withdraw themselves, and they do not care what their peers
think of them. Children develop friends at this stage; therefore, parents should not interfere to
avoid the formation of problems later in life. Sexual changes like breast formation and the
growth of pubic hair may occur. They might find solace in music, which helps them to cope with
stress. Depression might happen due to the death of parents. Cultural and religious beliefs sway
them drastically at this time. They know what is right or wrong. Some children tend to show
disrespect to others and even their properties.
Comparison and contrast of childhood stages
The environment significantly affects the growth and socialization of a child during the
early stages of development. Aspects of culture, religion, values, and beliefs influence a child’s
development. There are differences in how children react to issues associated with health and
body depending on their development stages (Erickson et al., 2012). Toddlers and preschoolaged
children require a lot of support from their parents. They develop a sense of identity and
ability to differentiate what is wrong or right.
Effects of spirituality and cultural differences in assessment
While handling toddlers and preschool-aged children, a nurse should always provide the
parent’s presence because they have different beliefs depending on their culture. What the nurse
should always ensure is the child’s comfort (Erickson et al., 2012). Understanding the child’s
pain expression is vital for the nurse before beginning treatment. Most treatments involve the
child taking off their clothes. Therefore, the nurse should make sure both the parent and the child
are comfortable with this. Giving the child a chance to hold the instruments used for treatment
may help to calm them down. They feel like a part of their treatment.
The developmental stages of a person involve experiencing crises, which contributes
negatively or positively to the development of a personality. These crises are commonly referred
to as ‘psycho-social nature crisis’ borders between psychological needs of the society and those
of an individual. Based on the theory, the successful completion of each stage results in a strong
character and self-esteem. Basic qualities are features the ego can use to resolve successive
crises. Failure to complete the steps leads to a strong capability to achieve the stages that come
later, and therefore leading to a wonderful temperament and a sense of identity. These stages,
however, can be resolved effectively later.
Erickson, J. I., Jones, D. A., & Ditomassi, M. (2012). Fostering nurse-led care: professional
practice for the bedside leader from Massachusetts General Hospital. Sigma Theta Tau.
Walkerdine, V. (2003). Developmental psychology and the child-centered pedagogy: the
insertion of Piaget into early education. In changing the subject (pp. 166-216). Routledge.

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