What is Delusional Disorder?

Delusion disorder is a rare yet severe mental illness in which an individual gets a lot of delusions, accompanied with a bit of hallucinations. Sometimes, the person also gets slight symptoms of psychosis. Even though the person suffering from the disorder may feel or act normal; their behaviour is slightly odd than others.

Delusion disorder disrupts everyday life. The individual gets auditory and visual hallucinations. Moreover, they often get beliefs that are usually unbelievable or unrealistic. The common beliefs of a person suffering through delusion disorder includes being deceived, poisoned, getting followed by, and a lot more.

Delusion is associated with a lot of disorders like schizophrenia, psychotic disorders, and many more. It usually happens in middle to late life. It's more common in women than in men!

Symptoms:

  • Unusual beliefs of illusions of situations or people
  • Constant hallucinations
  • Mood swings
  • Irritation and anger
  • Restlessness

Types:

  • Somatic: In this condition, the individual feels that they have certain physical defects or any medical problems. Even though they are perfectly fine inside out; their false beliefs lead to severe mental illness.
  • Grandiose: In this condition, the person has an over-inflated sense of knowledge, power, worth, and identity. They always stay in a misconception that they are superior than others and has made difference in the society
  • Persecutory: In this condition, the person feels that they are being mistreated by someone closer, or one of their close ones are being harassed. They constantly seek help from higher authorities or else take legal actions.
  • Erotomanic: In this condition, the person believes that the other individual of higher status is in love with them, and isn't able to share it. They always try to contact or stalk them out of delusion.
  • Jealous: In this condition, the person constantly feels that their partner or spouse is cheating on them. Without having real proof they get the feeling of unfaithfulness, leading to jealousy.
  • Mixed: In this condition, the individual suffers from two or more types of delusions like grandiose, somatic, and jealous. It gets difficult for them to handle all these, and as a result, they frequently get emotionally disturbed.

Treatment:

Being a severe mental illness, delusion disorder is complicated to treat, and when the person is suffering from mixed disorder, then it gets more difficult. The treatment for delusional disorder includes a combination of medication, psychotherapy, and other related strategies.

Doctors often prescribe antipsychotic drugs, mood stabilisers, and anti-depressants. However, many individuals find psychotherapies to be more effective, as it focuses on the core emotional problems. Following are the combination of therapies for delusional disorder used by therapists for treatment:

  • CBT
  • REBT
  • EFT
  • Client-centered Therapy
  • Mindfulness-Based Cognitive Therapy

Self-help tips for Delusion Disorder:

  • Avoid alcohol or recreational drugs: Alcohol consumption or drug abuse make the disorder worse. Although many people consume it; alcohol and drugs have several after-effects as well.
  • Keep a diary: As in delusional disorder, the person is not able to identify what is real, and what is imagined; if you are facing it you should keep a diary with you. This diary should include all the necessary details which you have seen in the day, so that you can recall it afterwards. You can also avoid certain situations when they arise by keeping a diary.
  • Manage your stress: Whenever you start feeling stressed, try distracting yourself and do activities which you love doing the most. You can either sing, read, exercise, or listen to music.
  • Get enough sleep: Always ensure that whatever you are eating is nutritional so that you get sound sleep in the night. Always have a sleep of almost 8-9 hours, to avoid extensive stress.
  • Discuss your problems with a trusted person: Identify a friend or a family member that is interested to talk to you, and listen to you genuinely. If you don't have anyone; you can seek professional help too.

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