Psychosis is often described as a “break from reality” because it makes you experience or believe things that aren’t real. It can change the way you think, act, or feel. Psychosis is a syndrome—a group of symptoms. Psychosis itself isn’t a disease or disorder—it’s usually a sign that something else is wrong.
Treatment for psychosis usually includes medication and counselling. Some people need to stay in the hospital for assessment or treatment. The most important thing to remember is that all symptoms are treatable.
What is normal?
Few symptoms of psychosis are part of most people’s normal lives. Signs of psychosis generally means professional help is needed.
What are common signs and symptoms?
The following thoughts or behaviours are typical of psychosis:
- Delusions are a strong belief in something that isn’t true. Like a belief that someone is following you.
- Hallucinations are things you sense that aren’t really there. The most common hallucination is hearing another voice talking that others can’t hear.
- Speech is so jumbled or illogical that no one can understand it.
- You have a hard time organizing or completing tasks, like cooking or getting dressed.
- Your movements are very slow, awkward and rigid, or are very fast.
- You might not being able to show emotions, talk much, or be motivated to do anything.
Should I seek help?
Psychosis is much easier to treat if it’s treated early. People who receive treatment during their first episode of psychosis often recover faster, experience fewer related problems like depression, spend less time in the hospital, and have fewer school, work, or social problems. With treatment, many people never experience psychosis again after they recover from their first episode.
Mental Health 101The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
Knowledge is power. This series of free online tutorials is a starting point for learning about mental health. You can come away with a greater understanding of the mental health concern you are interested in knowing more about.
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