What is paranoia?

By: Dr. Jennifer B. Lagrotte, DMFT

Whether it was 2000 BC, or today, paranoia is something that seems to remain strong in humans. This is not to say that everyone is extremely paranoid, but it is something that seems to exist in everyone, to some degree. The difference comes in with how paranoid a person is, as well as why they feel this way. There are many cases where it might be justified; however, there are also many where it is not rationally warranted because it is a result of something else. When people think of instinctual emotions that have to do with survival, few will acknowledge paranoia.

To be more exact, paranoia is something someone will feel in response to a threat. This particular reaction is usually borne out of fear of something that is not totally known or understood. It is the irrational fear that can cause great paranoia that must often be addressed in our world today. This is not to say it was not something some dealt with in the past, it is simply that it was not understood. There is still a long way to go before it is better understood, even by today's standards, but there is help for those suffering from extreme paranoia. First, one has to acknowledge that they may have a problem. Others may try to tell someone they know suffering from this that there really is no great conspiracy going on, but convincing the afflicted person is not easy. In some cases, this person may be suffering from some form of schizophrenia, and convincing them to go see someone like a psychiatrist is not going to be easy. When looking to help someone in this situation, or for someone who is trying to help themselves out of this situation that has been developing over time, it is important not to push too hard. With paranoia, trust is hard to come by. The stronger the paranoia, the more difficult it is going to be for the person to trust in someone enough to accept help from them.

While it can be hard to talk and trust a professional online, it is easier for one to access the help of an online therapist. Some may have some reservations about contacting an online counselor, to be fair it is a fairly new concept, it is an option that has benefited thousands of people to date. The first step is to allow that barrier of distrust built from the paranoia to come down, if even a little; just enough for one to consider the advantages of going through some online counseling. By taking a leap of faith with some online therapy, one will not only be able to identify what may be causing them their anxiety, they will also be able to address it. The online counselor can work with the patient until their feeling of anxiety and paranoia decreases. This is not something that will happen over night, but with a little commitment and work, the online therapist can help the patient put their worries to rest.

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Dr. Jennifer Lagrotte, DMFT is the owner of CompleteCounselingSolutions.com which offers a variety of online counseling services. If you would like to know more about Jennifer or any of our online therapists, visit our website.

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