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SOMATOFORM DISORDER

Somatoform disorders are mental illnesses that cause bodily symptoms, including pain. The symptoms can't be traced back to any physical cause. And they are not the result of substance abuse or another mental illness. People with somatoform disorders are not faking their symptoms. The pain and other problems they experience are real.

The symptoms can significantly affect daily functioning. Doctors need to perform many tests to rule out other possible causes before they diagnose a somatoform disorder.

A diagnosis of a somatoform disorder can create a lot of stress and frustration for patients. They may feel unsatisfied that there's no known explanation for their symptoms. Stress often leads patients to become more worried about their health. This creates a vicious cycle that can persist for years.

Symptoms

Symptoms and signs of dissociative disorders depend on the type and severity, but may include:

  • Feeling disconnected from yourself
  • Problems with handling intense emotions
  • Sudden and unexpected shifts in mood – for example, feeling very sad for no reason
  • Depression or anxiety problems, or both
  • Feeling as though the world is distorted or not real (called ‘derealisation’)
  • Memory problems that aren’t linked to physical injury or medical conditions
  • Other cognitive (thought-related) problems such as concentration problems
  • Significant memory lapses such as forgetting important personal information
  • Feeling compelled to behave in a certain way

Get in Touch

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