Paranoid disorder or delusional disorder is a type of serious mental illness that only affects a handful. People who suffer from psychotic disorders can’t tell what’s real from what is imagined. The delusional disorder makes you believe in something that isn’t true or based on reality. These delusions are not completely unrealistic or bizarre. They are events or things that can happen in real life, like being followed, poisoned, deceived, conspired against, or loved from a distance. People with delusional disorder often can continue to socialize, function normally in a proper manner. But people who suffer from other psychotic disorders might also have delusions as a symptom of their disorder. You’ve probably heard about the Paris Syndrom or the Jerusalem Syndrom. Like those, here we are listing 10 Rare Psychological Delusions you might don’t know about.
1. Syndrome of Subjective Doubles (SSD):
Subjective Doubles is a condition where the sufferers truly genuinely believe that they have a doppelgänger who looks like them but has a different personality and a different life. They might believe this doppelgänger lives next to them and trying to steal their identity. Sometimes the doppelgängers can be a stranger or even a family member. People with bipolar disorder or schizophrenia might have this syndrome. The people with Subjective Doubles disorder often get traumatized because of the thought of someone stealing their identity including their clothing, build, and even face.
2. Ekbom’s Syndrome:
Named after Swedish neurologist Karl Axel Ekbom, Ekbom’s Syndrome is among the scariest syndromes where the sufferer believes that their body has been infested by parasites or insects. It is a dangerous form of hypochondria. People who suffer from this delusion can see or feel these insects on or under their skin biting or crawling. The disorder can continue for decades and it also can be contagious. Sufferers often contact pest control specialists or dermatologists and in even more intense cases sufferers might scratch their flesh raw.
The people who suffer from Erotomania or Phantom Lover Syndrome genuinely believe that someone mostly of higher social standing, like a celebrity of some field, is somehow deeply in love with them, even though they have never met or talked in reality. People with Erotomania can get very obsessive and aggressive of their alleged loved one. Another delusion is the Othello syndrome, where the patient believes that their partner is cheating on them, despite there being no evidence.
4. Reduplicative Paramnesia:
Reduplicative Paramnesia is a condition where the sufferer believes that a place or location usually their home, or another familiar place, has been duplicated or moved somewhere else. This disorder can be caused by brain damage. For example, wounded soldiers often believe that their field hospital is in their hometown when it is nowhere near. Reduplicative Paramnesia shares some familiar traits with Cotard’s and Capgras disorder.
5. Thought Insertion:
Thought Insertion is mainly a symptom of schizophrenia. The people who suffer from Thought Insertion believes that their thoughts are not their own. Hearing voices inside of one’s head is a symptom of this rare disorder. The sufferer sometimes thinks that those thoughts are coming from another specific person and sometimes they won’t know where they are coming from. Many people suffering from this disorder believes that the government is watching them. They believe that those thoughts are transmitted to them via microchip implants or some other way. These targeted people often tend to aggressive in nature.
6. Capgras Delusion:
Thought to be neurologically similar to Cotard’s, the exact cause of Capgras Delusion is unknown. Although it is often linked to methamphetamine abuse, schizophrenia, neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s, brain damage and dementia. Capgras Delusion is a disorder where the sufferer believes that a person who is close to them even their pets has been replaced by an imposter who appears identical but isn’t the same person. It is named after French physician Joseph Capgras who first described it.
7. Cotard’s Syndrome:
Cotard’s Syndrome or the Walking Corpse Syndrome is often found amongst people suffering from schizophrenia. The sufferer of this syndrome strongly believes that they are dead or they have lost their internal organs. These people even some times believe to be able to smell their own flesh rotting. They deny their existence and become very much withdrawn from others and they also don’t look after themselves.
8. Alice-in-Wonderland syndrome:
More common than the other syndromes on this list, the Alice-in-Wonderland syndrome not necessarily connected with mental illness. People can experience this delusion at one phase of their life such as children or just before falling asleep or because of a migraine. The person with Alice-in-Wonderland syndrome may see some objects smaller than they really are and others bigger than they really are. Alice-in-Wonderland syndrome affects perceptions of both space and time, so the sufferer may also find it difficult to judge time.
9. Fregoli Delusion:
Fregoli Delusion has common traits as Capgras Delusion. The people who suffer from Fregoli Delusion believes that strangers have taken the place of their friends and family members wearing crafty disguises to look like the faces they have known. Intermetamorphosis is another similar disorder where the people believe that someone they know well has been transformed into another person whom they also know or knew. And the people who sufferers from reverse intermetamorphosis believe that they themselves have transformed into another.
10. Clinical lycanthropy:
People who suffer from Clinical Lycanthropy genuinely believe that they can turn into animals. Most commonly wolves to many other animals. Because of their believes these people often act like animals and try to live or hide in forests like areas. Boanthropy is another similar disorder were the sufferers believe they are cows. They even often behave like cows.