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What is Psychosis?

The word psychosis indicates a number of symptoms resulting in a person losing touch with reality. These symptoms affect the mind and alter someone’s thinking, ideas and perceptions.

Symptoms of Psychosis (Can be one, a mixture, or varying degrees of the following):

  • Hallucinations

    Seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling, tasting, sensing something that others do not experience.

  • Delusions (False beliefs / Worries / Paranoia)

    Having a belief that something is true despite evidence to the contrary.

  • Confused Thinking

    Trouble expressing oneself clearly and having a hard time concentrating. Others might say that they do not understand what the person is saying.

Additional Common Experiences Associated with Psychosis:

  • Isolation

    People often will describe wanting to be alone or be left alone.

  • Nervousness / Fear / Anxiety

    These feelings often lead to a person avoiding situations in which they were previously comfortable.

  • Sleeplessness

    People describe the inability to rest and loved ones will often report that a person is pacing or unable to rest.

  • Lack of Energy / Motivation

    Many times people will describe feeling unable to complete tasks, most of which used to come easily.

  • Decline in Functioning

    Often a person will have an extremely difficult time in school or work, and their performance deteriorates drastically.

  • Disorganized Behaviors

    Loved ones will often report that someone is seeming to either be distracted or tending to things in their mind, or seem to just sit and stare (seeming to be stuck).

  • Sadness / Depression

    People will many times report no longer feeling happy about the things they used to enjoy.

  • Self-Harm / Suicidal Thoughts

    People will describe wanting to harm themselves, no longer wanting to be alive or a having a desire to kill themselves. Loved ones will sometimes notice someone exhibiting risky behaviors or putting themselves in dangerous situations.

    IMPORTANT! This warrants immediate help; different states and cities have different resources for intervention and emergency response. Friends and family should familiarize themselves with crisis lines, nearest hospitals or emergency services, and calling 911.