What are delusions?

Mental delirium is a condition, in which the individual loses the perception of reality due to sudden confusion, generatingaltered thoughts and a decrease inself-awarenessin order to correctly interpret the world around him.

Note: There are two kinds of delusions at the psychiatric level: Hyperactive delirium which refers to an extremely activedelirium and hypoactive delirium, which means insufficiently active.

Among the most common symptoms of mental delirium that can occur in a person, is the ability to concentrate decreased, there is no sense of location or space,ideas or thoughts that are out of context, among others.


Why do delusions occur?

The person at risk of delirium may have suffered from any of the following conditions:

1. Brain injuries, illnesses and infections

Those injuries that occur at the level of the brain such asstrokes, infectious diseases such asmeningitisor some type of mental disorder such as Schizophrenia, can include among their symptoms, delirium andparanoia.

2. Poor nutrition and dehydration

In order for the brain to function normally, it must receive a constant blood flow with the necessary nutrients and the required hydration.

Important: If blood flow is interrupted, nutrition is not adequate or there is not proper hydration, it can lead to brain failure, causing delirium.

3. Medications, drugs and alcohol

Many medications, especially those with anticholinergic effects, psychoactive drugs and opiates , as well as alcohol or drug abuse, have negative effects on brain neurons, including some types of hallucinations , which can generate states of delirium.

To highlight: The withdrawal syndrome in alcoholics or drug addicts causes the appearance of delirium symptoms that aggravate the patient’s state of health.

4. Lack of sleep and emotional problems

Another triggering factor for states of mental delirium is the Imbalance caused at the Neurological Level by the lack of quality rest  , of at least 7 continuous hours during the night and the interruption of the sleep-wake cycle, which may cause this disorder in the manifestations of hypnagogic or Hypnopompic Hallucinations .

Likewise, emotional problems that alter mood also affect cognitive functions due to the alteration in the functioning of neurotransmitters .

What types of delusions are there?

Patients with psychological disorders may present various types of delusions , which we mention below:

1. Delusions of persecution

Delusion of persecution is a type of delusion where the person falsely perceives that they are being persecuted, spied on, or investigated by some person or group of people, mainly to harm them.

2. Somatic delusions

3. Delusions of grandeur

In this type of delusions, the person revolves around a false belief and out of reality in which he harbors an exaggerated idea of his importance , power or knowledge, he may even believe himself to be omnipotent.

You should know: In this context, the patient Exalts his virtues above the rest , making himself seen as the most important person in the world.

4. Delusions of control

A person with a delusion of control falsely perceives that their thoughts, emotions , and behavior are being controlled by some external entity, be it a person or a device, and that none of their actions correspond to their own will.

5. Erotomanic delusions

The erotomanic or Clerambault delusion is a type of delusion in which attention is focused on a deep (but false) conviction of the delusional subject that another person is in love with him, usually of a higher social class or status. 

Note: The delusion usually refers to a spiritual union rather than a mere sexual attraction, a characteristic feature of this type of delusion.

6. Delusions of jealousy

This type of delusion, also called Otero Syndrome , is characterized by the fact that the delusional person has the fixed idea (but false in reality) that his partner is being unfaithful, even if the contrary is proven by real facts .This type of delirium can lead to violent behaviors of the delusional towards the couple.

How is the treatment for delusions?

To treat this type of disorder, there are some very effective strategies to control and eradicate this type of behavior from the subject, which we mention below:

1. Address the root cause

Generally, delusional disorders derive from other more complex pathologies , for which priority should be given to the underlying pathology or that is medically declared, such as schizophrenia, and with this, the problem of delusional disorder could be solved at the same time.

Highlights: To arrive at an accurate diagnosis, it is necessary for family members to provide all the necessary information to their doctor.

2. Coping and support measures

You should know: This type of strategy makes the individual see that they have their own abilities to correct their own behavioral deviations.

Likewise, family support in these cases is of vital importance so that the delusional person does not feel that they are fighting alone, since on some occasions they do not know with whom or against what they are fighting.

Key Findings

  • Delirium is a condition in which the individual loses perception of reality.
  • Delusions are not a disease , they are considered a disorder that arises as a consequence of a more complex disease.
  • In this condition, the patient Loses the Power of cognitive functions.
  • The delusional patient expresses ideas or thoughts that are out of context.

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