Medicalization is the process of transforming nonmedical health issues into medical problems in order to provide diagnosis and treatment. This process is accomplished by using medical language and a biomedical framework to articulate the problem. The nonmedical health issue is reframed as a deviation from the norm, requiring treatment to help patients return to “normal.”

Medicalization became a part of sociology research in the 1960s, primarily as a result of the growing field of psychiatry. In the 1960s, psychiatry was attempting to identify, diagnose, and treat a variety of behaviors once seen as immoral, sinful, or criminal. One of the most popular examples of this is the medicalization of homosexuality. Psychiatrists redefined homosexuality as a medical condition, rather than a sinful act, proposing a number of ...

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