My dad had to go visit a friend. His daughter is studying something in psychology and mental health, though I can’t remember as I wasn’ t really listening. I told her what happened yesterday and said that is sounded like depersonalisation. She asked me lots of questions, some of which I remember.”Did you feel like the people were somewhat robotic?”
“Yeah, I suppose, they just felt really fake and I touched them and it freaked me out”.

Was one of the questions.

She then went on to explain that depersonalisation can be a part of bipolar disorder and that I should google it to understand it better. So I did.

This is what i found on wikipedia:

Depersonalization (or depersonalisation) is an anomaly of self-awareness. It consists of a feeling of watching oneself act, while having no control over a situation.Subjects feel they have changed, and the world has become vague, dreamlike, less real, or lacking in significance. It can be a disturbing experience, since many feel that, indeed, they are living in a “dream”.Though degrees of depersonalization and derealization can happen to anyone who is subject to temporary anxiety/stress, chronic depersonalization is more related to individuals who have experienced a severe trauma or prolonged stress/anxiety. It is also a prominent symptom in some other non-dissociative disorders, such as anxiety disorders, clinical depression, bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder,obsessive-compulsive disorder and migraine.

So I have an anxiety disorder and well as we all know bipolar disorder is on the cards. Now I do also have migraines BUT I would never count them severe enough to cause this sort of problem. Migraines are not the cause. But anxiety disorder and bipolar disorder, maybe one fuels the other. Now it says that “chronic depersonalization is more related to individuals who have experienced a severe trauma or prolonged stress/anxiety” well, if you have an anxiety disorder you’re more likely to suffer prolonged anxiety; obviously otherwise it wouldn’t be an anxiety disorder.

Now, I’m obviously pretty desperate for answers and I know that you shouldn’t self diagnose and I’m not. I’m just saying that depersonalization is the nam of what happened yesterday and it’s not depersonalisation in it’s own disorder, it’s depersonalization as part of one of my other disorders. Now, PTSD has been mentioned more than one to me and depersonalization according to a quick google search (I know, look how through I am) can be part of it. So since one of the things I’ve been diagnosed with has it has a possibility and bipolar disorder, a massive likelihood has it as part of it… it could be part of that.

But what causes it in people? With or without other disorders.

Depersonalization disorder, like the dissociative disorders in general, has been regarded as the result of severe abuse in childhood. This can be of a physical, emotional, and/or sexual nature. Findings in 2002 indicate that emotional abuse in particular is a strong predictor of depersonalization disorder in adult life, as well as of depersonalization as a symptom in other mental disorders. Analysis of one study of 49 patients diagnosed with depersonalization disorder indicated much higher scores than the control subjects for the total amount of emotional abuse endured and for the maximum severity of this type of abuse. The researchers concluded that emotional abuse has been relatively neglected by psychiatrists compared to other forms of childhood trauma.

But just like everything else, there is a physical side.
NEUROBIOLOGICAL. In the past few years, several features of depersonalization disorder have been traced to differences in brain functioning. A group of British researchers found that the emotional detachment that characterizes depersonalization is associated with a lower level of nerve cell responses in regions of the brain that are responsible for emotional feeling; an increased level of nerve cell responses was found in regions of the brain related to emotional regulation. A group of American researchers concluded that patients with depersonalization disorder had different patterns of response to tests of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis (HPA, the part of the brain involved in the “fight-or-flight” reaction to stress ) than did patients with PTSD. Other tests by the same research team showed that patients with depersonalization disorder can be clearly distinguished from patients with major depression by tests of the functioning of the HPA axis.

Other neurobiological studies involving positron emission tomography (PET) measurements of glucose (sugar) metabolism in different areas of the brain found that patients with depersonalization disorder appear to have abnormal functioning of the sensory cortex. The sensory cortex is the part of the brain that governs the senses of sight, hearing, and perceptions of the location of one’s body in space. These studies indicate that depersonalization is a symptom that involves differences in sensory perception and subjective experiences.

So, I don’t know what I make of all this. But I think that at least this blog is useful for information.


9 thoughts on “Depersonalisation…

  1. yay a sciency blog. πŸ™‚

    I know you are struggling and searching for answers, we have talked about that a lot. It is good you are researching, just don’t start to group things and think ok, I have them all, or this this and this. you will find that many conditions exist across all or most disorders/conditions. Like depression, even hallucinations. Depersonalisation too has a thread. As I keep saying, Insomnia is big for you, and yes I think possible for depersonalisation too. Not to say that BP wouldn’t cause it or PTSD… I am just saying don’t think the worst. You have enough anxiety.

    I know too, it is just so easy to say and hard to do.


    • Hehe, I have done the odd sciency blog. But I suppose this is more sciency than the others.

      I don’t think the worse and I wasn’t really searching like I said, my dad’s friends daughter said I should look it up.
      When this happens it is depersonalization. That is the what I’m calling it and not as a diagnosis, it’s just more descript than “those weird episodes when….”
      But like I said in the blog. BP, PTSD, anxiety are going to fuel it in the other disorders. So anxiety could fuel it in BP or vice versa.
      But like I also said in the blog, I’m not self diagnosing or thinking I have “depersonalisation disorder”. I think I have traits of depersonalization and knowing this is actually is less anxiety. I can now, knowing this. Describe what its called to people better, know what to expect when it happens and know more importantly, it isn’t a seperate disorder. it’s linked to BP and anxiety. So yeah…

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