What Are Hallucinations The word “hallucination” comes from Latin and means “to wander mentally.” Hallucinations can involve hearing, seeing, feeling, smelling and even tasting things that are not real. However, auditory hallucinations (hearing voices or other sounds that have no physical source) are the most common type. Hallucinations are most often associated with the mental illness schizophrenia.
Common causes of hallucinations include drugs (prescription or recreational),stress, sleep deprivation and/or exhaustion, editation and/or sensory deprivation, electrical or neurochemical activity in the brain, mental illness and or brain damage or disease. If a person is having more than one episode, it is recommended that this person should seek evaluation. A general physician, psychologist, or psychiatrist will try to rule out possible organic, environmental, or psychological causes through a detailed medical examination and social history. If a psychological cause such as schizophrenia is suspected, a psychologist will typically conduct an interview with the patient and his family and administer one of several clinical inventories, or tests, to evaluate the mental status of the patient. It is not uncommon for people who are in good mental health to have hallucinations, also.
Hallucinations that are rare or infrequent usually are accounted for by short-term environmental factors such as sleep deprivation or meditation and no treatment may be necessary. Under other circumstances if the hallucinations are interfering with an individuals ability to function, a general physician, psychologist, or psychiatrist should be consulted so that there may be a recommend a treatment plan. In some cased it may not be hallucinations at all but delusions. Chronic cases of hallucinations and delusions typify psychiatric disorders such as schizophrenia and other delusional disorders. It is important to be precise about this symptom of true hallucinations and not from other symptoms such as nightmares, vision changes, delirium, dementia, and delusions. Delusions differ from hallucinations in that delusions refer to the minds reasoning and thoughts, rather than its sensory inputs.
Treatments for hallucinations vary. Hallucinations that my be symptomatic of a mental illness such as schizophrenia should be treated by a psychologist or psychiatrist. Antipsychotic medication such as thioridazine ,Thorazine, clozapine , or Risperdal may be prescribed. Hallucinations can be frightening. On some occasions, individuals may see threatening images or just ordinary pictures of people, situations or objects from the past. Some common hallucinations that are reported are feeling a crawling sensation on the skin, hearing voices, seeing patterns, lights, beings, or objects that arent there. It is uncommon for one to have hallucinations related to smell or taste are rare. Though a person may suffer from hallucinations, it does not mean that they can not function in society. It may take some concentration and medication on the persons part but a great example of success it Mr. John Nash. He suffered from schizophrenia with hallucinations. It was late in life however, he did in the end, learn how to ignore his hallucinations.