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August 21st, 2017


Distortions of perception based on external stimuli. Perceives things as different to usual, but accepts that they are not real or that things are perceived differently by others.
  • Interpretation

  • Complete illusions: inattention resulting in misinterpretating, such as misreading words in a newspaper
  • Affect illusions: related to a particular mood state, such as mistaking shadows for people when particularly anxious or paranoid
  • Pareidolia: vivid illusions without any effort required, such as interpreting the markings on a picture of burnt toast as the Virgin Mary
  • Tactile illusions - such as phantom limb syndrome in those who have undergone amputation
  • Significance

  • Generally benign, though particular mood states such as depression, anxiety, mania or delirium may trigger illusions.
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