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Psychosis

Individuals are said to be in a state of psychosis when they have experiences that they believe to be true, but which do not correspond to reality and nor to their culture's norms. The two main forms of these experiences are delusions and hallucinations.  

Aside from these experiences, people in a state of psychosis will continue to have a normal level of consciousness and to be aware of their surroundings. This is in contrast to a state of delirium, where an individual can also experience delusions and hallucinations, but will be disoriented, confused, and with a clouded and fluctuating level of consciousness.

Psychosis can occur in a variety of psychiatric conditions, including Schizophrenia and other Psychotic Disorders, Major Depressive Disorder, Bipolar Disorder, and Dementia.

Psychosis can also be caused by substances such as corticosteroids, cocaine, amphetamines, cannabis, and PCP.

Medical causes of psychosis are rare. These include Temporal Lobe Epilepsy, brain tumors, Cushing's Syndrome, Systemic Lupus Erythematosus, Wilson's Disease, and paraneoplastic syndrome, to name a few. More often, when delusions and hallucinations are due to medical causes, it will be in the context of a delirium.

 

Delusions