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I Feel like I’m Going Crazy

by Kristina Randle, Ph.D., LCSW

About a month ago I started hearing things in my head. It has only happened about five times during this time. The sounds always come from the right side of my head but at the same time it feels like they are whispering in my ear.

The fist time I heard it, it sounded like multiple voices whispering harshly into my ear. I didn’t understand anything they said. The second time it was a single voice and I thought it told me to hurt or kill my dog, but I couldn’t really make out what it was said. My brain might have just interpreted it that way. The third and second time it was distinctively female and it laughed at something I had said in my head. The last time, it was a male voice that mocked me when I thought of possibly telling someone about the voices. I haven’t told anyone about them yet.

The voices only last about 5 seconds, but I feel like I can hear more than what they are saying. They are also always on the right side of my head, as well as in my right ear.

Other times, I find that the inside of my head is very loud, with music and static, but I never realize this until the sound stops and everything goes very quiet.

I thought I might have been developing schizophrenia, but I don’t think I have any other symptoms and the sounds i’m hearing seem different. I just want to know what is wrong with me. The noises can be frightening.

You suspect schizophrenia but in order to receive that diagnosis, other symptoms would need to be present including delusions or disorganized speech, among others. In the absence of those other symptoms, schizophrenia seems unlikely, though possible.

Schizophrenia can cause hallucinations (the voices you are hearing would be classified as hallucinations) but other potential causes include: substance use, dementia, epilepsy, fever, middle or inner ear disease, narcolepsy, severe medical illness, sensory problems such as blindness or deafness, and in rare cases, migraines.

I would recommend consulting your primary care physician about your symptoms. He or she can assist you in determining what might be wrong. The sooner that you seek help, the sooner a diagnosis can be pinpointed. Please take care.

Dr. Kristina Randle

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