Psychosis Treatment Center
Operating from the same baseline perception of reality is the glue that holds society, relationships and even an individual, you, together. Psychosis, in this context, is the obliteration of that foundation.
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Our grip on reality – on that sacred shared and collective knowledge of what exists, of what’s tangible – makes everything we do in our daily lives possible. The basic understanding that what’s in front of you, is really in front of you and that events that happen around you are in fact happening logically, and with rational cause and effect, are foundational to our ability to function.
Psychosis, in this context, is the obliteration of that foundation.
As per the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), “the word psychosis is used to describe conditions that affect the mind, where there has been some loss of contact with reality. When someone becomes ill in this way it is called a psychotic episode. During a period of psychosis, a person’s thoughts and perceptions are disturbed and the individual may have difficulty understanding what is real and what is not.”
As far as how many people it affects, the NIMH notes that around 3% of Americans will experience psychosis at some point in their life and each year roughly 100,000 adolescents and young adults experience first episode psychosis, meaning the first time they experience a psychotic symptom or episode.
What Does Psychosis Mean?
What distinguishes and characterizes psychosis/psychotic episodes are two chief symptoms: hallucinations and delusions.
These involve perceiving things like sights, sounds or smells that look and feel real but are not. They’re pure figments of the imagination and they can manifest as hearing voices or music, feeling sensations in and on the body like something crawling on the skin or seeing things, like objects or people that aren’t there.
These are defined as “a fixed false belief based on an inaccurate interpretation of an external reality despite evidence to the contrary. The belief is not congruent with one’s culture or subculture, and almost everyone else knows it to be false.” Simply put, these are false and irrational beliefs like believing someone is out to get you or that you have special powers.
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Psychosis can be brought on by many things and is quite often a symptom of other illnesses such as schizophrenia. As far as root causes though, there isn’t necessarily a specific, singular one. Psychotic episodes can be brought on by trauma, illness and even genetics can all play a role in the fomenting of them as well.
Additionally, and crucially, seeing as how drugs and alcohol act directly on our minds, in essence working to rewire the brain, substance-induced psychosis is a dangerous side effect that can accompany drug and alcohol abuse and can happen with both short and longer-term usage.
Now you might be thinking, “wait, alcohol also can cause a break from reality?”. It may be hard to believe because of the widespread societal acceptance of alcohol consumption, but yes, alcohol-related psychosis can indeed happen. Moreover, those with an exceptionally severe alcohol use disorder may be among the small percentage of people who experience delirium tremens while going through withdrawal. A dangerous condition in its own right and which can be accompanied by hallucinations.
Furthermore, and aside from alcohol, psychotic episodes are not limited to any particular type or class of drug either. Stimulants like amphetamines and cocaine are just as associated with the delusions, paranoia and hallucinations which define psychosis as central nervous system depressants like benzodiazepines and marijuana are. And, of course, it goes without saying that hallucinogenic drugs like LSD or PCP are taken for that very dissociative effect.
The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) points out that “virtually any substance taken in very large quantities over a long enough period can lead to a psychotic state”. One study found that of the patients admitted with first-episode psychosis, the lifetime prevalence of a SUD was 74% showing that psychosis that co-occurs with a substance abuse disorder (SUD) is not at all uncommon.
It’s not always that drug use or drinking directly leads to psychosis, however. Substances, both illicit and legal, can exacerbate and make worse an already existing mental illness or disorder SAMHSA adds that “the toxic effects of substances can mimic mental illness in ways that can be difficult to distinguish from mental illness”.
When to Get Help for Psychosis
Seeing as how psychosis represents a break and disconnection from reality, no matter the cause, getting help with it is as early as possible is imperative. Not only is it an extremely dangerous state of mind to be in for the person experiencing it, but it can also be equally dangerous for others to be around.
If drugs or alcohol were the cause of the psychotic episode, it’s important to seek treatment for the underlying substance abuse disorder in order to break free from the vice grip of addiction and work to remove the trigger for delusions and hallucinations. And keep in mind that psychosis can very well be the symptom of another mental illness or disorder altogether, so removing drugs and alcohol will make it easier to properly understand and treat any co-occurring issues that are at play.
What to Expect in Psychosis Treatment in Los Angeles
Psychosis treatment and understanding go hand in hand at our Los Angeles psychosis treatment center. At Thrive Treatment we know the hardship that comes with psychosis and psychotic episodes, particularly with respect to those triggered by substance abuse.
After undergoing detox to get the drugs and alcohol out of your system, you can expect an integrated treatment approach that’s catered to your unique circumstances.
The cornerstone of our care is individual and group talk therapy, or psychotherapy, where you’ll be able to work through the issues that led to substance abuse and/or the psychotic episode with a trained specialist. We’ll equip you with healthy ways to deal and cope with potential triggers in the future as well as include your family so they understand what you’re going through too because education is key for everyone.
With a board-certified Medical Director and Psychiatrist, you can rest assured that you’re receiving the most up to date and evidence-based treatment practices.
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Thrive's Psychosis Treatment Program in Los Angeles Can Help You
Psychosis isn’t permanent and you can get control back over your mind. It just takes the right team behind you to get you there.
Get in touch with us at Thrive Treatment and let us help guide you back.
This relates to flashbacks, terror laced thoughts and memories of the trauma itself flooding back and can trigger hallucinations. Additionally, a person can have vivid nightmares. The reliving and re-experiencing of trauma can make the heart race and cause sweating.
On the flip side, a person may altogether work hard to avoid anything related to their trauma, be that any people, places, situations and circumstances that conjure memories or serve as a reminder of what they went through. This can turn into a wholesale change in a daily routine. As this behavior takes hold, particularly with avoiding people, feelings of being detached can seep in.
Also called hyperarousal, this describes an increased level of anxiety as if a threat is still imminent. This can cause someone to startle very easily and feel overly jumpy or on edge which leads to difficulty concentrating. Due to that heightened anxiety, a person in this state will find difficulty in sleeping which causes stress levels to rise and make them prone to irritability and angry outbursts.
Negative thoughts go hand in hand with PTSD and reach into every part of someone’s life. They’re internalized negative thoughts about yourself as well as the world. A distorted perception of guilt and blame goes along with it which also leads a person to feel a sense of separation from others. Ultimately that cycle of thinking turns into a loss of interest in what were once enjoyable activities which can isolate a person further.