Conversion disorder, previously called conversion hysteria, is characterized by the appearance of a series of neurological symptoms that affect motor and sensory functioning without the presence of a significant disease that causes or justifies them. The disorder receives this name because it is considered that the person “converts” a psychological conflict into a series of physical symptoms, such as the inability to move certain parts of the body or use the senses usually.
This disorder has been studied, throughout history, by specialists in the field such as Pierre Janet or Sigmund Freud. In this FastlyHealarticle, we explain the causes, symptoms, and treatment of conversion disorder.
Causes of conversion disorder
Generally, the appearance of this disorder is associated with the existence of a psychological conflict in the patient. Symptoms often appear suddenly after a stressful experience, especially in late teens and early adulthood.
Certain factors can increase your risk of conversion disorder, including:
- Having a physical condition
- I suffer from a dissociative disorder that involves a loss of control in memory, consciousness, identity, or perception.
- I have a personality disorder that produces instability in the emotional, affective, motivational, and social dimensions.
Conversion disorder appears as a result of the patient’s attempt to resolve the psychological conflict, thus giving rise to a series of physical symptoms that reflect an internal dispute.
Symptoms of this condition
Before starting to list the signs of this condition, it is essential to note that, despite not being attributable to physical disease, the symptoms do exist and are not simulated or invented. Therefore, it should be considered an actual condition that does not appear of its own accord.
The symptoms of conversion disorder are based on the loss of one or more bodily functions, including the following:
- Muscle numbness or weakness
- Alterations in coordination and balance.
- Motor paralysis
- Hallucinations or blindness.
- Inability to speak
- Hoarseness, difficulty swallowing, or a feeling of a lump in the throat.
- Nervous breakdowns of the epileptic type.
Generally, symptoms appear suddenly, and their duration depends mainly on the patient’s condition and can be a matter of days or weeks.
Treatment of conversion disorder
The disorder is usually detected after conducting a medical examination and ruling out physical pathologies. The help of a professional therapist will be essential to apply psychotherapy that gives the patient tools when it comes to managing stress or trying to resolve the psychological conflict they are experiencing, which will most likely cause the symptoms to remit, sometimes suddenly, such as and how they appeared.
It is true that, in the presence of specific symptoms such as paralysis, it may be necessary to perform physical therapy to keep the area in question toned and prevent the muscles from losing their strength until the symptom disappears.
If you suspect this condition, do not hesitate to ask a professional and express your concerns to obtain an accurate diagnosis.
This article is merely informative, at FastlyHeal .com we do not have the power to prescribe medical treatments or make any type of diagnosis. We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.
If you want to read more articles similar to Conversion disorder: symptoms, causes and treatment , we recommend that you enter our category of Mental disorders .
I am a Surgeon with a diploma in comprehensive ultrasound and surgical care residency, an area I am specializing in. During the exercise of my profession, I have realized the need for patients to know the diseases they suffer, and I can tell you that a large part of their complications is due to a lack of information. Being a health web writer allows me to transmit my experience, without borders, to all those readers eager for knowledge, educate them in the prevention of diseases and promote a healthy lifestyle.