When it comes to mental health, some psychiatric cases can be so unusual and bizarre that they are difficult to comprehend. However, each day new and sometimes even unique mental disorders are discovered. Here is the list of five rare and unusual mental disorders. This list is an example how mental illnesses can play tricks on your mind and perception of the world that surrounds you, making it bizarre, and unusual, but most of all, making it difficult for you to live and function in such a world.
This syndrome which often occurs in patients with schizophrenia, dementia, patients with epilepsy and even after brain injury, accounts for the patient’s delusional belief that the close people around them, usually acquaintances, friends or a spouse even, are replaced by an identical looking impostor or more of them. It is usually treated with cognitive treatments and antipsychotic medications.
Alien Hand Syndrome
While still being conscious that the hand is a part of their body and having perfectly normal sensations in the hand at question, the person afflicted by the alien hand syndrome believes that the hand has a mind of its own and loses the purposeful movement of the limb. The person who suffers from this syndrome believes that their limb is possessed by a spirit or an entity which controls the hand or the limb. This syndrome is usually caused by a stroke or brain damage and is a result of damage to the frontal or parietal lobes of the brain, and corpus callosum – part of the brain that connects two cerebral hemispheres.
While many people have heard of the Stockholm syndrome, many people are not familiar with the Lima syndrome, which is its exact inverse. Lima syndrome got its name after the hostage crisis which took place in Lima, Peru, when kidnappers became sympathetic to their victims and released their captives. Sympathizing with victims can perhaps also be explained by intense feelings of guilt and second guessing one’s actions; however, it is also documented as a mental disorder that victimizers can go through.
Characterized by social withdrawal and extreme self-neglect, Diogenes syndrome got its name after the Greek philosopher Diogenes of Sinope, a Cynic and Minimalist. Diogenes promoted his ideas of nihilism and animalism while famously living in a wine barrel on the streets of Athens. Diogenes syndrome is associated with dementia and is found mainly in the elderly, characterized by lack of shame, apathy, low or no personal hygiene, and compulsive hoarding of rubbish.
Often a symptom of schizophrenia, thought insertion is a delusion the sufferer has about his very thoughts or not being their own but somebody else’s. In fact, the person will think that their thoughts are not coming from them and their thought processes, but that they are controlled and coming from another specific person or perhaps from an unknown a place.