What increases the risk of psychosis?
Common stressors that can increase the risk of developing psychosis (especially when a family history is present):
- stressful events such as a death in the family, transition to a new school, extreme work or academic pressure, relationship break up
- lack of sleep
- drug use/withdrawal: high THC marijuana, speed, cocaine, crystal meth, ecstasy (MDMA), acid (LSD), mushrooms, special/”vitamin” K (ketamine) and heroin (opiates)
- difficult delivery at birth
- being born in the winter months
- growing up in a big city
- moving to a new country
Does this mean that if your mom has a mental illness, you were born in December, grew up in New York City and smoked your fair share of weed that you will definitely experience psychosis?
Your chances might be higher, but no. Why? Because we all have different sensitivities to stress. Some people are more sensitive to certain kinds of stress, and are therefore more likely to develop psychosis under those circumstances.
The best part: you can lower your risk by doing some pretty simple stuff (sleep, limit stress) – read on! 💪