Am I cracking up, or is this normal?


-HEALTH-


By Caitlin Spitzer


Do you ever feel like you’re going crazy and you can’t quite pinpoint why?


Truth is, most of us will probably experience something like this in our lives. It could be as simple as having a stressful day and forgetting where you put your keys as a result. Or maybe it’s one of those days where everything seems to be going wrong. Maybe you feel like something is off with your body and you’re not quite functioning right.


It can be frustrating when something feels off upstairs yet there’s no easy way to describe it. You might worry that you’re genuinely going crazy. While there’s no word to specifically describe this feeling, there are some explanations for it.


There are a few factors that can contribute to these feelings:


Stress and Anxiety: Stress and anxiety – especially long-term spells – can cause all sorts of strange and uncomfortable feelings and bodily sensations. It can have you convinced you’re losing your mind, or that there’s something seriously wrong with your body. There are several disorders, specifically, that can cause these feelings. Panic attacks are a well-known problem that can cause you to feel like you’re losing it, or even have you convinced that you’re dying. They’re terrifying for the sufferers who may be unaware of what is happening, although the good news is that they can be managed with medication and therapy. There are also phobias such as phrenophobia, which is literally the fear of going crazy. Although both are long-term mental health conditions, short-term stressors can cause the same issues to crop up. If you feel like stress or anxiety could be the cause of your feelings of craziness, it would be wise to speak to a mental health professional to weed out the cause of your anxiousness.


Medical Condition: Physical problems can often blur the lines with mental health. If there is something wrong with your body, it can cause subsequent anxiety as a result, or as a direct result of the condition itself. But there are definitely conditions that can make people believe they are “losing it” with or without anxiety. Migraine disorder, for example, can cause all sorts of weird sensations that can make a person convinced there’s something wrong. According to

unitedbrainassociation.org, symptoms can cause visual and auditory disturbances or bodily sensations such as numbness. Those symptoms alone would irk any person. Of course, any condition that can cause neurological or psychological problems can elicit a feeling of craziness. If you believe there is even a remote chance that this could be the case, it’s always best to consult a medical practitioner to rule anything out.


Disconnected: Although feeling disconnected is also related to mental health, it is vaguer and less clear-cut for anyone going through it. Being disconnected can simply mean you don’t feel like you belong anywhere. It could include loneliness or just be present as a feeling by itself, or it could present as apathy. People who feel disconnected can have fears that they may act out of character or lose control, like becoming angry in public. The feeling can go away on its own, but if it doesn’t this is another issue for a mental health practitioner to steer you through.


When it comes down to it, if you feel like you’re cracking up, do not fret.


People who are battling genuine “craziness” (psychosis, delusions, etc.) usually are not aware that it’s even happening (WebMd). In fact, being aware and worrying about it is considered to be a good sign that you are actually perfectly normal. But, if you feel it could be something more, follow your gut feeling and get some advice from a professional.


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