Hallucinations Are More Common Than We Think

15 October 2016 Written by 

Hallucinations, or non-existent experiences, are far more common than you might be comfortable with. For example, one study suggested that as many as one in 20 people in the general population has experienced at least one hallucination in their lifetime that wasn’t connected to drugs, drinking or dreaming. Here are some of the most common types of hallucinations so you know what to expect if you ever find yourself in such a situation.


Visual hallucinations refer to seeing something that is not really there. Although this sounds terrifying, according to the American Academy of Ophthalmology, they are often a common result of certain medications or the combination of medications. Visual hallucinations can also occur as the result of dementia, migraines or alcohol addiction, News Medical reported.

A visitor looks at inflatable plastic balloons in an artistic installation inspired by the artist's childhood hallucinations. Reuters


Auditory hallucinations are when individuals hear something that does not exist, such as Hollywood’s classic “hearing voices” plot. According to News Medical, this is the most common type of hallucination found in schizophrenia patients, but is also common in grieving individuals who may hear the voice of a lost loved one.


Tactile hallucination refer to feeling something on your skin or body that isn’t really there, and these are almost always the result of alcoholism, or abuse of drugs such as cocaine or amphetamines, Medical News reported. The most common tactile hallucinations are the sensation of bugs or snakes crawling over your skin.


Proprioceptive hallucinations, also referred to as hallucinations of posture, describe hallucinations where the individuals experience sensations such as floating, flying, or having an out-of-body experience. In addition, proprioceptive hallucinations may also describe the sensation that you or a part of yourself is at a different location than the physical body, or you may feel phantom limbs.


These types of hallucinations involve smelling an odor that does not exist, and, according to Counselors Soapbox, is one of the most rare types of hallucinations. According to News Medical, these odors are usually unpleasant, such as vomit or feces. Olfactory hallucinations can occur as a result of damage to the olfactory system in the brain or epilepsy.

Content Originally Published By: Dana Dovey@Newsweek

Read 317 times Last modified on Tuesday, 01 November 2016 16:34
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