For this week’s Top 10 I’m sharing ten Mental Illnesses (as listed in the DSM-IV) that I think you have not heard of before. Let’s get started!
Somatization disorder is a long-term (chronic) condition in which a person has physical symptoms that involve more than one part of the body, but no physical cause can be found. The pain and other symptoms people with this disorder feel are real, and are not created or faked on purpose.
9. Pavor Nocturnis (a.k.a. night terror)
Night terrors are a sleep disorder in which a person quickly awakens from sleep in a terrified state. Night terrors occur during deep sleep, usually during the first third of the night. The cause is unknown but night terrors may be triggered by fever, lack of sleep, or periods of emotional tension, stress, or conflict. In contrast, nightmares are more common in the early morning. A person may remember the details of a dream upon awakening, and will not be disoriented after the episode, which is not the case for night terrors.
8. Transient Tic Disorder
Transient tic disorder is a temporary condition in which a person makes one or many brief, repeated, difficult to control movements or noises (tics) and is most common in children. Examples of tics are reoccurring motions without rhythm, brief and jerky movements like blinking, kicking, grimacing, clenching fists and opening the mouth. Vocal tics include clicking, grunting, moaning and hissing.
7. Schizoaffective Disorder
Schizoaffective disorder is a psychotic illness with both schizophrenic and affective (mood) symptoms. While symptoms vary greatly, they may include depression, poor temper control, racing thoughts (affective), and delusions and hallucinations (schizophrenic).
6. Rett Syndrome
Rett syndrome is a rare inherited disease that causes developmental and nervous system problems, mostly in girls and it is related to autism. Babies with Rett syndrome seem to grow and develop normally at first, though between three months and three years of age, they stop developing and even lose some skills. Symptoms include loss of speech, compulsive movements such as hand wringing, balance problems, learning problems or mental retardation.
Trichotillomania is hair loss from repeated urges to pull or twist the hair until it breaks off. Patients are unable to stop this behavior, even as their hair becomes thinner. The person may pluck other hairy areas, such as the eyebrows, eyelashes, or body hair. It may affect as much as 4% of the population and women are four times more likely to be affected than men.
4. Obsessive-Compulsive Personality Disorder
Obsessive-compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) is a condition in which a person is preoccupied with rules, orderliness, and control. OCPD has some of the same symptoms as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). However, people with OCD have unwanted thoughts, while people with OCPD believe that their thoughts are correct. A person with this personality disorder has symptoms of perfectionism that usually begin in early adulthood. This perfectionism may interfere with the person’s ability to complete tasks or have relationships, because their standards are so rigid.
3. Depersonalization Disorder
Depersonalization disorder is a dissociative disorder in which the sufferer is affected by persistent or recurrent experiences of feeling detached from one’s mental processes or body. The symptoms include a sense of automation, going through the motions of life but not experiencing it, feeling as though one is in a movie, loss of conviction with one’s identity, feeling as though one is in a dream, feeling a disconnection from one’s body, a detachment from one’s body, environment and difficulty relating oneself to reality.
Pica is characterized by an appetite for substances largely non-nutritive (e.g., metal, clay, coal, sand, dirt, soil, feces, chalk, pens and pencils, paper, batteries, spoons, toothbrushes, soap, mucus, ash, lip balm). For these actions to be considered pica, they must persist for more than one month at an age where eating such objects is considered developmentally inappropriate. Pica is seen in all ages, particularly in pregnant women, small children and those with developmental disabilities.
1. Shared Psychotic Disorder
Shared psychotic disorder is also known as folie a deux (“the folly of two”). It is a rare condition in which an otherwise healthy person shares the delusions of a person with a psychotic disorder, such as schizophrenia, who has well-established delusions. For example: A person with a psychotic disorder believes aliens are spying on him or her. The person with shared psychotic disorder will also begin to believe in spying aliens. The delusions usually disappear when the people are separated.
This disorder usually occurs only in long-term relationships in which one person is dominant and the other is passive. The people involved often are reclusive or otherwise isolated from society and have close emotional links with each other.
Which disorders had you heard of before? What do you think of these disorders?
Please share your thoughts!