Author Topic: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?  (Read 2210 times)

smallcleanrat

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How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« on: February 29, 2020, 02:11:44 PM »
Sometimes it feels like someone is kicking or moving my chair while I'm sitting in it. Sometimes it feels like I'm getting a little shove in the back. Sometimes I feel like there's a tap on my shoulder and I think I see movement in my peripheral vision. Turn around and nobody's ever there.

Is this one of those things like eye floaters that most people get from time to time? Because it's new to me.

Has anyone had similar sensations before?

dr_codex

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #1 on: February 29, 2020, 03:52:36 PM »
Sometimes it feels like someone is kicking or moving my chair while I'm sitting in it. Sometimes it feels like I'm getting a little shove in the back. Sometimes I feel like there's a tap on my shoulder and I think I see movement in my peripheral vision. Turn around and nobody's ever there.

Is this one of those things like eye floaters that most people get from time to time? Because it's new to me.

Has anyone had similar sensations before?

I get the "phantom cell phone" effect every once in a while.

For unrelated reasons, I was reading up on early onset Alzheimer's; one symptom is hallucination. But the Alzheimer's Assoc. page points out that there are lots of other possible causes: mental, physical, sensory, and pharmacological.

Medial advice on the internet is notoriously bad, and I have no credentials to dispense it.

I hope you figure it out, and that they stop soon.
back to the books.

spork

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #2 on: February 29, 2020, 03:55:21 PM »
You need to be evaluated by a professional. Seek help.

mahagonny

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #3 on: February 29, 2020, 04:01:37 PM »
Any new medications in your routine; some could do something like that.

smallcleanrat

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #4 on: February 29, 2020, 04:33:03 PM »
You need to be evaluated by a professional. Seek help.

Have an evaluation next week. Due to start an outpatient program. These sensations are infrequent so they're not causing a huge problem. It's just weird.

Did some googling and looks like sometimes people with vestibular issues can sometimes feel like they are being pushed. Maybe mine is related to that.

The other suggestion I found was ghosts. Those would be some pretty bored ghosts. Who haunts a grad student?

Any new medications in your routine; some could do something like that.

No new meds for a couple of months now. But I think I was getting these even earlier than that. I don't remember if it coincided with a med change.

« Last Edit: February 29, 2020, 05:03:11 PM by smallcleanrat »

Hegemony

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #5 on: February 29, 2020, 05:01:09 PM »
I occasionally have stuff like that and have had for years. It's never been very bothersome or led to anything else.

smallcleanrat

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #6 on: February 29, 2020, 08:46:28 PM »
I occasionally have stuff like that and have had for years. It's never been very bothersome or led to anything else.

Just the pushing feeling? Or do you also sometimes feel like you see something moving in your peripheral vision?

Happened just now and startled me.

mouseman

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #7 on: February 29, 2020, 09:36:58 PM »
You need to be evaluated by a professional. Seek help.

I second this. You describe having both visual and tactile hallucinations. It can be harmless, it can be stress, or it can be symptoms of disease. 
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Supporting each man on the top of the tide
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smallcleanrat

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #8 on: February 29, 2020, 10:08:01 PM »
You need to be evaluated by a professional. Seek help.

I second this. You describe having both visual and tactile hallucinations. It can be harmless, it can be stress, or it can be symptoms of disease.

I’m seeing a doctor in a few days for an overall psych evaluation. I’ll mention this stuff. Probably not an emergency or urgent care thing is it?

Can a hallucination be location-specific? There were days I heard weird sounds in the lab, but nobody else could when I tried to point it out. I though it was sensory sensitivity related to migraines. When I step into the hall, the sounds stop. If it were in my head, wouldn’t the sound continue?

mouseman

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #9 on: February 29, 2020, 10:45:25 PM »
I do not think that it is see-a-doctor-in-24-hours urgent, a psych evaluation in a few days is good, and definitely mention these symptoms.

The sounds in the lab depend on what the sounds were, and who couldn't hear it. My daughter can hear many higher pitched sounds that I cannot.

Migraines could also be the cause of visual and auditory hallucinations, especially random noises and vague movements (rather than clear voices or vivid images). Also, all of these can be indices by stress and anxiety.
"Just the place for a Snark!" the Bellman cried,
   As he landed his crew with care;
Supporting each man on the top of the tide
   By a finger entwined in his hair.

                                       Lewis Carroll

clean

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #10 on: February 29, 2020, 11:49:00 PM »
Quote
Sometimes it feels like someone is kicking or moving my chair while I'm sitting in it. Sometimes it feels like I'm getting a little shove in the back. Sometimes I feel like there's a tap on my shoulder and I think I see movement in my peripheral vision.

You didnt try to recline your seat on a plane recently did you?

If not, then please do mention it at your doctor's visit. I do hope that you find out the cause if not a cure. (Sometimes just knowing what it is  is enough to make it stop, or at least not be startling).
"The Emperor is not as forgiving as I am"  Darth Vader

smallcleanrat

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #11 on: March 01, 2020, 06:38:42 AM »
I do not think that it is see-a-doctor-in-24-hours urgent, a psych evaluation in a few days is good, and definitely mention these symptoms.

The sounds in the lab depend on what the sounds were, and who couldn't hear it. My daughter can hear many higher pitched sounds that I cannot.

Migraines could also be the cause of visual and auditory hallucinations, especially random noises and vague movements (rather than clear voices or vivid images). Also, all of these can be indices by stress and anxiety.

Your daughter is still in her teens though, isn't she? Except for the PI, I'm the oldest person in the lab.

Some of the sounds are like beeping alarms. Sometimes it's a machine-like hum. I've wandered around the lab, but it's hard to pinpoint location.

Sometimes I think I hear footsteps or people talking (usually sounds like mumbling). Rarely I hear specific words, sometimes whispered, sometimes shouted from a distance. But hearing these things occasionally has been going on for years (unlike the pushing feelings and seeing things moving out of the corner of my eye). I never thought too much of it or mentioned it to a doctor. I thought it was one of those things that everybody gets sometimes.

A few times, I have answered a doctor's question of "Have you ever heard or seen things that weren't really there?" with "I'm not sure." They always respond with "OK" and move on to the next question. No one's ever asked me to elaborate.

Puget

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #12 on: March 01, 2020, 06:47:10 AM »
Hallucinations can occur in severe depression-- definitely describe these to your psychiatrist on your next visit.
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Caracal

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #13 on: March 01, 2020, 01:08:37 PM »
I occasionally have stuff like that and have had for years. It's never been very bothersome or led to anything else.

Just the pushing feeling? Or do you also sometimes feel like you see something moving in your peripheral vision?

Happened just now and startled me.

Well, yes, certainly I have had that feeling that something moved when it didn't. I assume it is just that sometimes somewhere between the eye and the brain a signal can get crossed. For all of this stuff, however, what matters is not the specific stimuli, but the meanings you attach to it. Last month I was hearing this weird humming in my house and I even stuck my head out the front door to see if it was louder outside. Maybe it was the furnace making a weird noise, or it could have been some weird industrial thing 20 miles away, or maybe my ears were just ringing. Who knows, but this is the first time I've thought about it since then.

What you're describing is being really agitated about these things. That might be lots of things, including anxiety, but you definitely want a psychiatrist who can evaluate what seems to be going on.

smallcleanrat

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Re: How Can You Tell if You're Hallucinating?
« Reply #14 on: March 01, 2020, 01:44:55 PM »
I occasionally have stuff like that and have had for years. It's never been very bothersome or led to anything else.

Just the pushing feeling? Or do you also sometimes feel like you see something moving in your peripheral vision?

Happened just now and startled me.

Well, yes, certainly I have had that feeling that something moved when it didn't. I assume it is just that sometimes somewhere between the eye and the brain a signal can get crossed. For all of this stuff, however, what matters is not the specific stimuli, but the meanings you attach to it. Last month I was hearing this weird humming in my house and I even stuck my head out the front door to see if it was louder outside. Maybe it was the furnace making a weird noise, or it could have been some weird industrial thing 20 miles away, or maybe my ears were just ringing. Who knows, but this is the first time I've thought about it since then.

What you're describing is being really agitated about these things. That might be lots of things, including anxiety, but you definitely want a psychiatrist who can evaluate what seems to be going on.

I'm not really sure what this part means.