Medicine: THE LINGO

Much of psychiatry's technical jargon has been taken over and rubbed the wrong way by laymen. Some of the most popular terms, correctly defined:

psychiatry. The science of healing diseases of the mind, a branch of medicine. (Psychiatrists must be M.D.s.)

alienist. An out-of-date word for psychiatrist.

psychology. A science that investigates and describes the mind. "Clinical psychology" investigates mental illness or maladjustment. (Psychologists need not be M.D.s.)

neurology. A branch of medicine that deals with diseases of the nerves, brain and spinal cord.

psychoneurosis (or neurosis). A form of mental disease, characterized by conflicting emotions and bad adjustment to environment. Symptoms: nervousness, attacks of anxiety,...

Want the full story?

Subscribe Now


Get TIME the way you want it

  • One Week Digital Pass — $4.99
  • Monthly Pay-As-You-Go DIGITAL ACCESS$2.99
  • One Year ALL ACCESSJust $30!   Best Deal!
    Print Magazine + Digital Edition + Subscriber-only Content on

Learn more about the benefits of being a TIME subscriber

If you are already a subscriber sign up — registration is free!