An altered perception of reality An altered perception of reality

Hallucinations are perceived sensations of smell, sounds or vision where the individual is the only one that smells, hears or sees them.

They are not the result of external physical stimuli. The most common hallucination is hearing voices when no one has said anything; however, patients may also hear footsteps walking towards them, windows or doors opening, they may see people or objects that do not exist, or they may feel the internal movement of their organs, for example. What causes this?

According to the Mayo Clinic, a head trauma or concussion can cause brain damage as well as aneurysms, cancer or multiple sclerosis, among other conditions. As a result, this damage can affect cognitive function which, in some cases, can lead to hallucinations.

As the Alzheimer’s Association of Spain states, hallucinations may also be the product of the development of Alzheimer’s, or the result of a schizophrenic episode. In any case, the recommendation is to see a physician for an eye and hearing assessment.

Frequent hallucinations may include:

  • Experiencing bodily sensations such as a crawling feeling on the skin or the movement of internal organs.
  • Hearing sounds such as music, footsteps, or slamming windows or doors.
  • Hearing voices when no one has spoken.
  • Noticing scents that are not there.
  • Sometimes these hallucinations are normal. For example, it may be part of the grieving process to believe you have seen a loved one who has recently died.

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