Psychosis refers to changes in the brain that interfere with the person’s experience of their world. Characteristic symptoms are:
Hallucinations: hearing voices or seeing visions
Delusions: false beliefs or marked irrational suspicions of others
Confused thinking: jumbled thoughts or speech, difficulty concentrating
People who have any of the above symptoms are identified as experiencing psychosis. In addition to the above symptoms they also commonly experience: social withdrawal, disrupted sleep patterns, mood swings, decreased motivation, pervasive anxiety, an inability to enjoy activities, odd, unusual behaviors, changes in appetite and eating
Occasionally, people experiencing psychosis have suicidal and/or homicidal impulses. Fortunately, the latter is uncommon, despite many myths to the contrary.
Typically, psychotic illnesses first emerge in late adolescence or early adulthood and are very distressing for young people and their families.Approximately 3 out of every 100 people will experience a psychotic episode, making psychosis more common than diabetes.With treatment, most people make a full recovery from a psychotic episode.