Some people have groups or ‘clusters’ of symptoms which psychiatrists are able to recognise as indicating particular disorders, like schizophrenia or bipolar disorder (manic depression). These two conditions both involve episodes of psychosis which can result in the person affected losing touch with reality because their thinking or mood has been disturbed. They may hear voices or see, taste or smell things which are not real, or develop strange beliefs, perhaps that they are being pursued by aliens or the mafia.
Or they might experience very high or low moods which have a strong effect on the way they behave. Some people will only ever experience a single ‘psychotic episode’, while others will have recurring periods of problems, perhaps at times of particular stress in their lives.
So, the types of symptoms you are experiencing are important in helping to diagnose the condition you have, and also in establishing the right treatment for a particular condition in order to give you the best chance of a successful recovery.
Other pages in this section