Psychosis disorder is a medical term used for symptoms that a person experiences are far away from reality. In short, a psychotic patient experiences hallucination and delusions. This means he sees things or hears abnormal sounds that do not exist or he believes in things that others do not. For example he believes that some people are trying to poison him or harm him wherein actuality there is no such possibility.
Psychotic disorder can develop as a result of wide variety of reasons. Genetic, environmental or biological factors play a role in its occurrence. Mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia are covered under psychotic disorders. A person suffering from psychotic disorder has tendency to hurt someone or hurt himself. Treatment consists of counseling and medical therapy.
Causes Of Psychosis Disorder
There is no single cause that may be indentified specifically that may be responsible for psychosis. All three factors are involved in its occurrence. These factors are environmental, genetic, and biological.
- Genetic causes: A person is likely to develop psychotic disorder if his mother or father or any sibling is suffering from this condition.
- Biological: Dopamine is a chemical in brain which acts as a neurotransmitter. It means dopamine helps to pass messages between two neurons. Excess of dopamine in brain can give rise to hallucination and delusion. Scientists do not know the exact mechanism between excess of dopamine triggering psychotic illness.
Environmental Risk Factors For Psychosis
- Traumatic experience during childhood such as child abuse, sexual assault, can cause severe mental apathy as the child grows older. Ultimately this may lead to development of psychotic disorder.
- Complications during birth: Premature birth, lack of oxygen during birth etc are suspected to be the cause for psychosis. However, prematurity and birth complications does not always lead to psychosis.
- Drug addicts and illegal drug abusers are vulnerable to develop psychotic disorder.
- Stress is one of the important factors related with psychotic disorder. Stress can cause changes in brain chemical. Imbalance in brain chemical is known to disturb mind.
- Psychosis can develop due to brain diseases. Tuberculosis of brain or traumatic injury to brain can lead to psychotic behavior.
Signs And Symptoms Of Psychosis Disorder
The symptoms of psychosis include following:
- Intense suspiciousness
- Poor sleep
- Loss of appetite
- Difficulty in concentrating at things.
- Disorganized speech changes topic frequently which are not relevant to each other.
- Like to stay withdrawn from society.
- No motivation in doing anything.
- Keeping quiet for days together.
- Sudden mental excitement or outburst.
- Tendency to commit suicide or homicide.
Treatment Guidelines For Psychosis Disorder
Treatment of psychosis involves medication as well as talk therapy or cognitive behavioral therapy. Majority of patients find improvement in their symptoms if they follow both these therapies properly as advised by the psychiatrist.
Often a person suffering from psychotic illness may become violent hurting someone or himself. Hence if the patient is in such state, he may need tranquilizer medicines.
Most symptoms are well controlled with anti-psychotic medicines. These medications help the patient to think more appropriately and gradually their hallucination or delusion vanishes. In some cases patient may have to take medicines throughout their life, for example in schizophrenia.
In cognitive behavioral therapy patient gets a chance to talk with a counselor dealing with metal health. The goal of such talking is to change the way patient thinks and behaves. This therapy is also effective in bringing about changes more effectively for managing the illness.