Discussing mental health complications socially happens when we know someone or someone who knows someone with a diagnosis. Underexposure to mental health issues that have been labeled as such can often lead to them being swept into corners where they aren’t discussed regularly among the masses. I mean, we don’t all study mental health, right?
Anxiety and depression are the poster children for recognizable disorders among common speech, even becoming synonymous with being trendy. Other conditions like psychopathy or narcissism are well known, yet often misused.
People tend to understand mental health disorders relative to their own experience. Here are a few common disorders that you may not have heard of.
1. Alice in Wonderland Syndrome
Alice in Wonderland Syndrome is a unique syndrome with neurological symptoms that vary in detail but share the commonality of a fleeting sense of disproportionate reality perception.
In specific, it can impair the sensation of touch, vision, and hearing. A sufferer feels a sense that they are smaller or larger than they are. Hence referencing the tale where Alice consumes a potion that forces her to shrink in size and later grow. It can occur in both children and adults.
2. Reactive Attachment Disorder
Occurring in young children and infants, Reactive Attachment Disorder (RAD) is a condition where there is a disconnect between children and their instinct to rely on a caregiver for emotional connection.
They may seem irritable, upset, or fearful when interacting with adults, and do not seek comfort from them when distressed. Instead, they seem displaced and possess little to no emotion when interacting with other people.
3. The Multiple Classifications of Schizophrenia
You may have heard the term schizophrenia buzzing, but did you know there are four different types?
- Paranoid schizophrenia, the most common type, is an intense paranoia associated with extreme behavior.
- Catatonic schizophrenia refers to the act of becoming emotionally, mentally, or physically shut down or otherwise paralyzed by the disorder. Sufferers may appear to be frozen, and in chronic cases, can face a medical emergency if not functioning.
- Undifferentiated schizophrenia refers to a debilitating experience where sufferers lose the ability to communicate out of feeling intense confusion effectively. This may prevent them from doing everyday activities like showering.
- Schizoaffective disorder is not schizophrenia by definition, but rather delusional thoughts or other symptoms. This occurs in conjunction with the presence of a mood disorder such as mania or depression.
4. Peter Pan Syndrome
Peter Pan Syndrome is the inability of an individual to find their footing as a responsible and functioning adult in society. Distinguished as a pop psychology syndrome, or one not listed in the diagnostic manual, the syndrome is much more common than we might know.
Stemming from childhood issues such as an abusive, overly spoiled, or unstable home, this syndrome manifests into adulthood as a stunted ability to evolve with age. Sufferers will experience difficulty progressing in career environments and often results in the use of drugs or alcohol.
5. Complex Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (C-PTSD)
People most often associate PTSD with war veterans or individuals that have undergone serious physical trauma. However, this type of post-traumatic disorder can occur from bullying or other intense psychological traumas occurring in both childhood and adult years.
Sufferers may experience flashbacks, avoidance of situations that may serve as a trigger, hyperarousal, distrust in self and others, and sleeping problems.
A Word from GR8NESS
There are countless mental health disorders, syndromes, and symptoms that do not find their way in everyday conversation among the average person. We must shed light on mental health conditions that are both common and uncommon, as well as those that are often misunderstood.