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My Hallucinations Are Getting Worse

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From a teen in the U.S.:  i seen hallucinations for awhile but they have slowly been getting worse..  i’ve been to pysch wards before and they have always asked if we see hallucinations but mine were minor so i never told anyone. these hallucinations are getting worse as i’m growing up.

when i drive home, i see people and animals in the middle of the street and i have to swerve around them. my friends always get confused and tell me that it’s weird how i randomly jerk my car, meaning that they cannot see these deer and random pedestrians who i see.

i know tons of people who say that sometimes they feel spiders crawling on them. i feel hands. they aren’t there but they feel like they are really on my thigh or arms. i get anxious about them when they are there so i started to scratch my legs to comfort me.

the thing that is getting worse is the dark. when it gets dark i flip out. occasionally i see balls of light flashing around the room. i can stand being in the house at night but walking outside is the hardest thing i can do. i see people standing by the stop sign and behind trees, watching me. sometimes i see random faces that don’t even have bodies. i have such a fear of them that i need at least one person to come walk me out to my car at night.

my parents always made jokes about how “scary” i am and that they don’t know why i am so bad about being alone or even just in the dark. ive tried to tell them by saying things like “hey dad do you see that light that’s zooming around the room” but he makes jokes about it. my mom tells me that no one will want to room with someone who has every light on in their dorm and will turn off the lights in rooms we are sitting in. i don’t these are normal and i don”t want to stress over something that is relatively normal. please help me out

My Hallucinations Are Getting Worse

Answered by on -

A.

I am very glad you wrote to us. You are right. These hallucinations are not “normal”. You have a serious problem that needs to be taken seriously. The cause may be a physical or mental disorder.

Hallucinations can be caused by a number of neurological conditions as well as drugs that target the central nervous system. They can also be a symptom of a psychiatric disorder.

We always look to the medical explanations first. When hallucinations occur without other symptoms of psychosis, they may be a symptom of a seizure disorder or lesions in the brain. Visual hallucinations are also common in people with certain sleep disorders. If you are taking any drugs like an antidepressant or some type of stimulant, the hallucinations may be a side effect.

If medical reasons are ruled out and you also have other symptoms of psychosis, you should be evaluated for possible schizophrenia. Symptoms of schizophrenia are categorized as “positive” or “negative”. Positive symptoms are delusions, hallucinations, and limited or disorganized speech. Negative symptoms include difficulty experiencing and expressing emotion, and inability to start or continue activity that is directed toward a goal. In addition to these symptoms, there may be problems with working memory, logical thinking, and social relationships that make it hard to manage the daily tasks of life.

The good news is that hallucinations can be treated. If the problem is medical, then appropriate medical interventions can solve them. If you aren’t sleeping enough, you can get help from a sleep disorders clinic. If the hallucinations are drug induced, your doctor can change your prescription or your dosage. If the problem is related to illegal drug abuse, a substance abuse clinic can help you manage withdrawal and get clean.

If the problem is psychiatric: Hallucinations usually stop with the use of neurological or antipsychotic medications. Ideally, medication is supported by talk therapy. Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) is the type of psychotherapy that has been found to reduce symptoms and help people manage the distress that is common in people who have schizophrenia.

I’m sorry your parents aren’t taking you seriously. Do share this response with them. The place to start to get help is with your medical doctor. But an appointment will only be useful if you are totally honest about your life style (sleep patterns, drug use if any, diet and exercise) as well as your symptoms. If the doctor thinks you need a psychiatric evaluation, then a referral will be made.

Please follow up. The earlier you get help, the more effective help can be.

I wish you well.

Dr. Marie

My Hallucinations Are Getting Worse

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Dr. Marie Hartwell-Walker

Dr. Marie is licensed as both a psychologist and marriage and family counselor. She specializes in couples and family therapy and parent education. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter.

APA Reference
Hartwell-Walker, D. (2020). My Hallucinations Are Getting Worse. Psych Central. Retrieved on October 21, 2020, from https://psychcentral.com/ask-the-therapist/2020/07/03/my-hallucinations-are-getting-worse/
Scientifically Reviewed
Last updated: 30 Jun 2020 (Originally: 3 Jul 2020)
Last reviewed: By a member of our scientific advisory board on 30 Jun 2020
Published on Psych Central.com. All rights reserved.