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olfactory hallucinations
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olfactory hallucinations

I have just been diagnosed as bipolar after years of being diagnosed with major depression with psychotic features.

I am taking 1 mg of Risperdal daily and Effexor.

For the last month during the night prior to being fully awake, I have been aware of smelling something.  I don't remember what it smelled like, but have had this happen a number of times.

I am wondering if this could be olfactory hallucinations?  Would you please tell me what olfactory hallucinations are like?
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Susan,

     A hallucination is a sensory perception(ie voice/noise, vision, tactile, smell/olfaction or taste) in the absence of an external stimuli/source.  Auditory then visual hallucinations are the most common type of hallucination found in psychiatric disorders (schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, major depression with psychotic features).  Olfactory, gustatory(taste) and tactile hallucinations are often more indicative of a physical conditon such as alcohol withdrawal and seizure disorders.
     Hypnagogic hallucination is a sensory perception in the absence of a stimuli that occurs upon awakening from sleep such as hearing a noise.  This is a normal occurence in many people on occasion.  I suggest that you discuss this issue further with your primary care physician.  Good luck.


Sincerely,

HFHS MD-JM

Keywords:  Hallucinations
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I have heard that olfactory hallucinations cand be cause by a few things.

1.  Now don't panic, you would know if you were like this. Sometime olfactory hallucinations can be caused by other mental disorders, even head traumas.  It is sometimes linked with personality disorders like schizophrenia.

2. Mediactions sometimes cause strange side effects.

3. You might have a physical porblem with you nose or your olfactory nerve.

In any case, discuss it with your doctor.
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Thank you for posting and answering my question.

It is scary!  Would you answer one more question for me as I have to wait until next week for an appointment with my primary care physician.

Would olfactory hallucinations be more likely to happen often or consistently?  Mine seem minor,very short (less than 30 seconds) and only as I wake up during the night.
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