Difference between psychosis and neurosis
The term psychosis was first used by Ernst Von Reuchtersleben as an alternative word to insanity and mania. Psychosis is a generic term for any mental state where the individual has lost their sense of reality, allowing normal social functioning to deteriorate. It can be treated with medication or psychotherapy. Psychosis is not a clinical diagnoses and the DSM IV describes it as a symptom common in other mental illnesses. You would not use hypnosis with someone who suffers with psychosis. The three primary causes of psychosis are:
1. Functional e.g. schizophrenia or bipolar disorder
2. Organic e.g. stemming from medical rather than psychological conditions, for example, a brain tumour
3. Psychoactive drugs
In the 18th century William Cullen coined the term Neurosis. Neurosis is a general term used to refer to mental distress. It does not prevent rational thought or affect daily functioning. Neurosis is not listed in the DSM V as a mental illness. Neurosis causes emotional distress without affecting a person’s ability to think clearly. Disorders associated with neurosis include OCD, anxiety and phobias. Neurosis affects most people in some way or another. It is more about neurotic thoughts or behaviours that impair not prevent normal daily life. Neurosis is not treated with medication. Neurosis can be treated with hypnotherapy.
Is there a grey area? Yes and no. Yes because many people tend to misunderstand the terms and band them around casually. For example, “my mother is neurotic” or “the guy I work with is completely psychotic. Both are also generally cuased by some sort of triggering event. However, the actual distinction is pretty clear. Generalising here but a person suffering with psychosis will see everything as somebody else’s fault, whereas someone suffering with neurosis will see it as their fault.