The word psychosis is used to describe a condition and a set of symptoms that include delusions, hallucinations and disturbed thinking.
Experiencing some of these symptoms at one time is called a psychotic episode.
For some people, psychotic episodes last for a few days. For others, they can last until they are treated. Some people experience psychotic episodes frequently while others only experience them rarely.
During a psychotic episode, you may believe you are being followed or your life is in danger. You might not know you are unwell during a psychotic episode and may believe that what you are experiencing is real.
Psychosis can be a symptom of schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, schizoaffective disorder, some forms of personality disorder and Parkinson’s disease.
It can also be caused by:
- drug or alcohol abuse
- severe stress, anxiety or depression
- sleep deprivation
- rare side-effects of certain types of medication.
Where to find support:
Shine is a national organisation that provides information and support to people affected by psychosis and other mental health difficulties, as well as their families.
HSE Website – Psychosis
If you’re thinking about suicide or self-harm or if you need help right away, call 999 or 112
There are also specific support lines that you can call:
Samaritans Ireland – 116 123
Pieta House – 1800 247 247
Childline can also be contacted by any child or young person by calling 1800 66 66 66, texting to 50101 or chatting online at Childline.ie 24 hours a day, every day.