In psychiatry, thought broadcasting is the belief that others can hear or are aware of an individual's thoughts.The person experiencing this symptom can also think that their thoughts are being broadcast through different media, such as the television or the radio. Different people can experience thought broadcasting in different ways. Thought broadcasting is most commonly found among people that have schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, or bipolar disorder. People with thought broadcasting rarely admit to having this symptom or to the severity of the symptom. Thought broadcasting is treated with the use of an atypical antipsychotic and in certain cases cognitive behavioral therapy.
Thought broadcasting is considered a form of obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) and has multiple accepted definitions based on the many ways it can present itself. The first definition is that the person may hear their thoughts out loud and believe that others can hear the thoughts too. This definition relies on the fact that the thoughts are audible, through auditory hallucinations, in order for other people to hear them. The second definition consists of the individual believing that others can hear their thoughts with no associated auditory hallucinations and no real explanation of how others can hear the thoughts. The thoughts are said to be leaving the person's head silently, and the way their thoughts are known by others is unknown to the patient. A third possible definition is that the person believes that others are able to control or think with them and can hear their thoughts that way. The thoughts do not become audible to the patient since there are no auditory hallucinations.
An example of thought broadcasting would be if a student is sitting in class and is thinking about what he or she may have planned for the upcoming weekend. They may start to believe that their teacher can hear their plans, and that the teacher knows that they are not paying attention to the lecture being given. They may also believe that the other students in the classroom can hear their thoughts and may be judging them for the plans that they have. The student experiencing this symptom may then be embarrassed and become even more disengaged in the lesson since they may start to try to control their thoughts in order to make sure no one can hear anything they are thinking. Depending on the severity, they may even leave class or attempt to distance themselves from others in social situations.
Thought broadcasting can be considered a positive symptom of schizophrenia.Thought broadcasting has been suggested as one of the first rank symptoms (Schneider's first-rank symptoms) believed to distinguish schizophrenia from other psychotic disorders. The prevalence of comorbid OCD and schizophrenia ranges anywhere from 7.8% to 40.5%. The width of this range may be explained by obsessive-compulsive (OC) symptoms commonly being overlooked due to their hierarchy in the diagnosis of schizophrenia. OC symptoms may initially present or worsen in presentation with the use of atypical antipsychotics, a common treatment modality for schizophrenia.
In mild manifestations, a person with this thought disorder may doubt their perception of thought broadcasting. When thought broadcasting occurs on a regular basis, the disorder can affect behavior and interfere with the person's ability to function in society. According to an individual's personality, this is considered to be a severe manifestation of thought broadcasting that is usually indicative of schizophrenia.Those who experience this symptom often steer clear from many social interactions, and can become socially isolated to ensure that no one can hear their thoughts. This symptom is often stress-induced, tends to worsen as their stress level increases, and may lessen when the individual is around those that they trust. In severe cases, the person may believe that people who are not even in the same room as them, or even in the house next door, can hear their thoughts.
Over time, thought broadcasting can shape how one thinks. If someone says a word or phrase similar to what the patient may have been thinking, that could catalyze this symptom, especially if it happens fairly frequently.
A combination of antipsychotic medication (such as Abilify, Zyprexa, Risperdal, and Clozaril) and psychotherapy are used to treat thought broadcasting.Although case studies utilizing a combination of antipsychotics and cognitive behavioral therapy have been completed with mixed results, individuals with psychotic disorders are often excluded from clinical trials studying psychological treatments for obsessive-compulsive symptoms.
Psychosis is a condition of the mind that results in difficulties determining what is real and what is not real. Symptoms may include delusions and hallucinations, among other features. Additional symptoms are incoherent speech and behavior that is inappropriate for a given situation. There may also be sleep problems, social withdrawal, lack of motivation, and difficulties carrying out daily activities. Psychosis can have serious adverse outcomes.
Hypochondriasis or hypochondria is a condition in which a person is excessively and unduly worried about having a serious illness. An old concept, the meaning of hypochondria has repeatedly changed. It has been claimed that this debilitating condition results from an inaccurate perception of the condition of body or mind despite the absence of an actual medical diagnosis. An individual with hypochondriasis is known as a hypochondriac. Hypochondriacs become unduly alarmed about any physical or psychological symptoms they detect, no matter how minor the symptom may be, and are convinced that they have, or are about to be diagnosed with, a serious illness.
Delusional disorder is a mental illness in which a person has delusions, but with no accompanying prominent hallucinations, thought disorder, mood disorder, or significant flattening of affect. Delusions are a specific symptom of psychosis. Delusions can be bizarre or non-bizarre in content; non-bizarre delusions are fixed false beliefs that involve situations that could occur in real life, such as being harmed or poisoned. Apart from their delusion or delusions, people with delusional disorder may continue to socialize and function in a normal manner and their behavior does not necessarily generally seem odd. However, the preoccupation with delusional ideas can be disruptive to their overall lives.
A thought disorder (TD) is any disturbance in cognition that adversely affects language and thought content, and thereby communication. A variety of thought disorders were said to be characteristic of people with schizophrenia. A content-thought disorder is typically characterized by the experience of multiple delusional fragments. The term thought disorder is often used to refer to a formal thought disorder.
Obsessive–compulsive personality disorder (OCPD) is a cluster C personality disorder marked by an excessive need for orderliness and neatness. Symptoms are usually present by the time a person reaches adulthood, and are visible in a variety of situations. The cause of OCPD is thought to involve a combination of genetic and environmental factors, namely problems with attachment.
Schizotypal personality disorder, also known as schizotypal disorder, is a mental and behavioral disorder. DSM classification describes the disorder specifically as a personality disorder characterized by thought disorder, paranoia, a characteristic form of social anxiety, derealization, transient psychosis, and unconventional beliefs. People with this disorder feel pronounced discomfort in forming and maintaining social connections with other people, primarily due to the belief that other people harbor negative thoughts and views about them. Peculiar speech mannerisms and socially unexpected modes of dress are also characteristic. Schizotypal people may react oddly in conversations, not respond, or talk to themselves. They frequently interpret situations as being strange or having unusual meaning for them; paranormal and superstitious beliefs are common. Schizotypal people usually disagree with the suggestion their thoughts and behaviors are a 'disorder', and seek medical attention for depression or anxiety instead. Schizotypal personality disorder occurs in approximately 3% of the general population and is more commonly diagnosed in males.
The mental status examination (MSE) is an important part of the clinical assessment process in neurological and psychiatric practice. It is a structured way of observing and describing a patient's psychological functioning at a given point in time, under the domains of appearance, attitude, behavior, mood and affect, speech, thought process, thought content, perception, cognition, insight, and judgment. There are some minor variations in the subdivision of the MSE and the sequence and names of MSE domains.
An intrusive thought is an unwelcome, involuntary thought, image, or unpleasant idea that may become an obsession, is upsetting or distressing, and can feel difficult to manage or eliminate. When such thoughts are associated with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), depression, body dysmorphic disorder (BDD), and sometimes attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the thoughts may become paralyzing, anxiety-provoking, or persistent. Intrusive thoughts may also be associated with episodic memory, unwanted worries or memories from OCD, post-traumatic stress disorder, other anxiety disorders, eating disorders, or psychosis. Intrusive thoughts, urges, and images are of inappropriate things at inappropriate times, and generally have aggressive, sexual, or blasphemous themes.
Autophagia refers to the practice of biting/consuming one's body. It is a sub category of self-injurious behavior (SIB). Commonly, it manifests in humans as nail biting and hair pulling. In rarer circumstances, it manifests as serious self mutilative behavior such as biting of one's fingers. Autophagia affects both humans and non humans. Human autophagia typically occurs in parts of the body that are sensitive to pain, such as fingers. Human autophagia is not motivated by suicidal intent, but may be related to the desire to seek pain.
Sexual obsessions are persistent and unrelenting thoughts about sexual activity. In the context of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), these are extremely common, and can become extremely debilitating, making the person ashamed of the symptoms and reluctant to seek help. A preoccupation with sexual matters, however, does not only occur as a symptom of OCD, they may be enjoyable in other contexts.
Olfactory reference syndrome (ORS) is a psychiatric condition in which there is a persistent false belief and preoccupation with the idea of emitting abnormal body odors which the patient thinks are foul and offensive to other individuals. People with this condition often misinterpret others' behaviors, e.g. sniffing, touching their nose or opening a window, as being referential to an unpleasant body odor which in reality is non-existent and cannot be detected by other people.
An auditory hallucination, or paracusia, is a form of hallucination that involves perceiving sounds without auditory stimulus. While experiencing an auditory hallucination, the affected person would hear a sound or sounds which did not come from the natural environment.
Grandiose delusions (GD), also known as delusions of grandeur or expansive delusions, are a subtype of delusion that occur in patients with a wide range of psychiatric diseases, including two-thirds of patients in manic state of bipolar disorder, half of those with schizophrenia, patients with the grandiose subtype of delusional disorder, frequently in narcissistic personality disorder, and a substantial portion of those with substance abuse disorders. GDs are characterized by fantastical beliefs that one is famous, omnipotent, wealthy, or otherwise very powerful. The delusions are generally fantastic and typically have a religious, science fictional, or supernatural theme. There is a relative lack of research into GD, in contrast to persecutory delusions and auditory hallucinations. Around 10% of healthy people experience grandiose thoughts at some point in their lives but do not meet full criteria for a diagnosis of GD.
Primarily obsessional obsessive-compulsive disorder is a lesser-known form or manifestation of OCD. It is not a diagnosis in the DSM-5. For people with primarily obsessional OCD, there are fewer observable compulsions, compared to those commonly seen with the typical form of OCD. While ritualizing and neutralizing behaviors do take place, they are mostly cognitive in nature, involving mental avoidance and excessive rumination. Primarily obsessional OCD takes the form of intrusive thoughts of a distressing or violent nature.
Obsessive–compulsive disorder (OCD) is a mental and behavioral disorder in which an individual has intrusive thoughts and/or feels the need to perform certain routines repeatedly to the extent where it induces distress or impairs general function. As indicated by the disorder's name, the primary symptoms of OCD are obsessions and compulsions. Obsessions are persistent unwanted thoughts, mental images, or urges that generate feelings of anxiety, disgust, or discomfort. Common obsessions include fear of contamination, obsession with symmetry, and intrusive thoughts about religion, sex, and harm. Compulsions are repeated actions or routines that occur in response to obsessions. Common compulsions include excessive hand washing, cleaning, counting, ordering, hoarding, neutralizing, seeking assurance, and checking things. Washing is in response to the fear of contamination. Ordering is the preference for tasks to be completed a specific way. Hoarding is the collecting of unnecessary objects. Neutralizing is the act of engaging in a ritual to make up for supposedly "bad behavior". Checking is the compulsion to check particular objects/places to ensure they are a certain way. People with OCD tend to be overly cleanly, repeatedly count objects, and seek reassurance to avoid making a mistake. Many adults with OCD are aware that their compulsions do not make sense, but they perform them anyway to relieve the distress caused by obsessions. Compulsions occur so often, typically taking up at least one hour per day, that they impair one's quality of life.
Childhood schizophrenia is similar in characteristics of schizophrenia that develops at a later age, but has an onset before the age of 13 years, and is more difficult to diagnose. Schizophrenia is characterized by positive symptoms that can include hallucinations, delusions, and disorganized speech; negative symptoms, such as blunted affect and avolition and apathy, and a number of cognitive impairments. Differential diagnosis is problematic since several other neurodevelopmental disorders, including autism spectrum disorder, language disorder, and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, also have signs and symptoms similar to childhood-onset schizophrenia.
The diagnosis of schizophrenia, a psychotic disorder, is based on criteria in either the American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, or the World Health Organization's International Classification of Diseases (ICD). Clinical assessment of schizophrenia is carried out by a mental health professional based on observed behavior, reported experiences, and reports of others familiar with the person. Diagnosis is usually made by a psychiatrist. Associated symptoms occur along a continuum in the population and must reach a certain severity and level of impairment before a diagnosis is made. Schizophrenia has a prevalence rate of 0.3-0.7% in the United States
The cause of obsessive-compulsive disorder is concerned with identifying the biological risk factors involved in the expression of obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) symptomology. The leading hypotheses propose the involvement of the orbitofrontal cortex, basal ganglia, and/or the limbic system, with discoveries being made in the fields of neuroanatomy, neurochemistry, neuroimmunology, neurogenetics, and neuroethology.
In psychology, relationship obsessive–compulsive disorder (ROCD) is a form of obsessive–compulsive disorder focusing on close or intimate relationships. Such obsessions can become extremely distressing and debilitating, having negative impacts on relationships functioning.
The delayed-maturation theory of obsessive-compulsive disorder suggests that obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) can be caused by delayed maturation of the frontal striatal circuitry or parts of the brain that make up the frontal cortex, striatum, or integrating circuits. Some researchers suspect that variations in the volume of specific brain structures can be observed in children that have OCD. It has not been determined if delayed-maturation of this frontal circuitry contributes to the development of OCD or if OCD is the ailment that inhibits normal growth of structures in the frontal striatal, frontal cortex, or striatum. However, the use of neuroimaging has equipped researchers with evidence of some brain structures that are consistently less adequate and less matured in patients diagnosed with OCD in comparison to brains without OCD. More specifically, structures such as the caudate nucleus, volumes of gray matter, white matter, and the cingulate have been identified as being less developed in people with OCD in comparison to individuals that do not have OCD. However, the cortex volume of the operculum (brain) is larger and OCD patients are also reported to have larger temporal lobe volumes; which has been identified in some women patients with OCD. Further research is needed to determine the effect of these structural size differences on the onset and degree of OCD and the maturation of specific brain structures.