Persecutory Delusional Disorder
Persecutory delusional disorder is a condition where the individual has an irrational paranoia that they are being persecuted by someone else. According to the DSM-IV-TR, persecutory delusions are among the most common form of delusions in paranoid schizophrenia, where the individual believes that “he or she is being tormented, followed, tricked, spied on, or ridiculed .” These delusions cause a significant amount of distress within the individual experiencing this disorder. There are many different delusional disorders that exist: grandiose, somatic, mixed, and erotomanic, among others.
Causes of Persecutory Delusional Disorder
These delusions are a form of paranoid schizophrenia. So, the causes of this disorder may be linked to the causes of schizophrenia. The individual’s family history must also be taken into account.
Symptoms of Persecutory Delusional Disorder
People suffering from this disorder may experience the following:
Belief that they’re being followed
Belief that they’re being persecuted
Belief that they’re being spied on
Belief that they’re being mistreated
Belief that they’re in harms way
Persecutory Delusional Disorder Diagnostic Criteria
To get diagnosed with this disorder, the individual would have to get a psychiatric evaluation. Upon getting the evaluation, the doctor would look at how many symptoms they are experiencing, as well as how distressing the symptoms are.
Treatments for Persecutory Delusional Disorder
To treat persecutory delusional disorder, the patient may be prescribed medications that are typically used to treat schizophrenia. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) may also be used to help with treating this disorder.