The Student who is Severely Disoriented of Psychotic
Your responsibilities are not to diagnose or provide therapy; it is the development of a compassionate and forthright conversation that ultimately helps a student in trouble find understanding, support, and the proper therapeutic resources
Facts about psychotic thinking:
The main feature of psychotic thinking is “being disconnected
- Speech that makes no practical sense. The student seems confused
about the current place, time, and/or has a poor awareness about the situation
- Lack of a response to simple questions like, “Are you hungry?”
- Extremely odd or eccentric behavior.
- Significantly inappropriate or a complete lack of emotion
- Bizarre behavior that indicates hallucinations
- Strange beliefs that involve a serious misinterpretation of
- Writing nonsense words or numbers
- Social withdrawal
- Inability to connect with or track normal interpersonal
- Extreme and unwarranted suspicion
Bipolar disorder involves periods of serious depression which
can be combined with periods of extreme euphoria and frenzied thinking and behavior,
the latter of which can reflect a poor connection with reality. A person with
bipolar disorder can appear psychotic.
Psychological illnesses that involve psychotic features often
have an onset between the late teens and early 30s. Recognize that psychotic
states can involve extreme emotion or lack of emotion and intense fear to the
point of paranoia. Recognize that a student in this state may be dangerous to
self or others.
What you can do:
- Consult with a clinician at the Counseling Center (904) 620-2602.
- Call 911 and then the Counseling Center if the student is
- Consult with the Dean of Students Office or UNF Police
(ask if there is a “Crisis Intervention Team or CIT officer on Duty”)