What Is Psychosis?
Despite popular belief, psychosis is a symptom, not a mental illness. It’s also more common than most people believe. Approximately 3% of the population will experience an episode of psychosis at some point in their lives. These behavioral, psychological, and cognitive symptoms can include:
A person experiencing psychosis often doesn’t realize what’s happening to them. Generally, they will either experience hallucinations or delusions.
Those experiencing hallucinations may express seeing, hearing, or feeling things that aren’t there. For those that experience delusions, they may have irrational thoughts or beliefs, such as believing that external forces are controlling them or that they have special powers.
Early Signs of a Psychotic Episode
Often, an individual’s first episode doesn’t occur suddenly. Even if others don’t notice, an individual will typically experience minor changes in perceptions and thoughts that eventually lead to an episode of psychosis. To help them healthily manage psychosis and other symptoms, loved ones should keep an eye on someone who exhibits the following early warning signs:
Causes of Psychosis
The medical community is still trying to understand psychosis and how exactly it develops. Generally, professionals agree that there are a few factors that can affect the development of an episode, including:
Treatment For Psychosis
An individual can learn to manage the symptoms of psychosis and any related conditions successfully, however, the treatment must be individualized considering the person’s history, motivation, and response to suggestions. At Lifeskills, we treat psychosis using our Cognitive Remediation Therapy (CRT) Pathway.
The CRT Pathway is used to treat clients with thought disorders that are experiencing cognitive deficits including problems with attention, memory, processing speed, facial recognition, and other social deficits. The pathway uses Brain HQ which is a computer-based cognitive rehabilitation training program that helps people think more clearly and quickly. Using brain games and interpersonal skills groups, the pathway helps clients improve their attention, memory, problem-solving, organizational, and planning skills. Our CRT Pathway also uses other types of therapy, psychoeducation, and medications to help stop the cognitive decline and in some instances reverse it.