Facts about Psychotic Thinking:
- The main feature of psychotic thinking is “being out of touch with reality.”
- Bipolar disorder involves periods of serious depression combined with periods of extreme euphoria and frenzied thinking/behavior, the latter of which can reflect a poor reality. A person with bipolar disorder can become psychotic.
- Psychological illness that involve psychotic features often have an onset between the late teens and early 30s.
- Symptoms include:
- Speech that makes no sense
- Extremely odd or eccentric behavior
- Inappropriate or complete lack of emotion
- Bizarre behavior that could indicate hallucinations
- Strange beliefs that involve a serious misinterpretation of reality
- Social withdrawal
- Inability to connect with or track normal communication
- Extreme or unwarranted suspicion
What You Can Do
- Consult with a professional at Personal Counseling 401.865.2343.
- Speak to the student in a direct and concrete manner regarding your plan for getting him/her to a safe environment.
- Accompany the student to Personal Counseling 401.865.2343 or call Safety and Security at 401.865.2222 if the student is highly impaired.
- Recognize that psychotic states can involve extreme emotion or lack of emotion and intense fear to the point of paranoia.
- Recognize that a student in this state may be dangerous to self or others.
What You Should Avoid Doing
- Assuming the student will be able to care for him/herself.
- Agitating the student with questions, pressure to take specific actions, etc.
- Arguing with the students unrealistic or irrational thoughts.
- Assuming the student understands you.
- Allowing friends/roommates to care for that student without getting professional advice as to whether or not that plan is appropriate.
- Getting locked into one way of dealing with the student, be prepared to adapt to the specific situation.
- Assuming the family knows about the student’s condition.