Because paranoia often occurs as part of psychotic disorders, many paranoia sufferers also suffer from symptoms like delusions, hallucinations, or disorganized thinking. While similar in some ways, paranoia is different than each of these things.
Delusions are what can come after paranoia, at least if you don’t get help. With paranoia, you have thoughts that others may be trying to hurt you, but when you’re delusional you truly believe that others are doing these things.
You may even have complex theories about your delusions, and you could believe that your theories are absolute proof that they’re true. In your mind, delusions are reality, and even solid evidence can’t convince you otherwise.
With paranoia, the problem is in your thinking, but with hallucinations, you actually see, hear, or smell something that’s not real. Paranoia and hallucinations may exist at the same time in conditions like schizophrenia.
Disorganized thinking means that you have a hard time following thoughts to completion, expressing yourself, or processing what you read or hear. Although paranoia may sometimes seem similar to disorganized thinking, the problems with disorganized thoughts aren’t necessarily connected to paranoia.
Paranoia, delusions, and all other symptoms of psychotic disorders are difficult to cope with because it’s hard to recognize the problem when you’re in the middle of it. The experienced care providers at Mindful Care can help.