Read below about derealization, including causes and common questions. Or get a personalized analysis of your derealization from our A.I. health assistant. At Buoy, we build tools that help you know what’s wrong right now and how to get the right care.

This symptom can also be referred to as:
Nothing seems real

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10 Potential Derealization Causes

Disclaimer: The article does not replace an evaluation by a physician. Information on this page is provided as an information resource only, and is not to be used or relied on for any diagnostic or treatment purposes.

  1. 1.Depersonalization / Derealization Identity Disorder

    Depersonalization/Derealization Identity Disorder is when a person experiences unreality or detachment from one's mind, self or body or from one's surroundings.

    Progression is variable and highly personal.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    depersonalization or derealization, derealization, impaired social or occupational functioning, ringing in the ears, amnesia
    Symptoms that always occur with depersonalization/derealization identity disorder:
    depersonalization or derealization
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  2. 2.Depression

    Depression is a mental disorder in which a person feels constantly sad, hopeless, discouraged, and loses interest in activities and life on more days than not. These symptoms interfere with daily life, work, and friendships.

    Depression's course is highly variable, and it may last weeks, months, or years.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, depressed mood, headache, anxiety, irritability
    Symptoms that always occur with depression:
    depressed mood
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  3. 3.Fibromyalgia

    Fibromyalgia is a disorder that causes widespread pain, tenderness, and fatigue.

    Fibromyalgia is generally a lifelong condition

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, arthralgias or myalgias, anxiety, depressed mood, headache
    Symptoms that always occur with fibromyalgia:
    arthralgias or myalgias
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  4. 4.Panic Disorder

    Panic disorder is a type of anxiety disorder. It causes panic attacks, which are sudden feelings of terror without true danger. One may feel as if they are losing control or have physical symptoms like sweating or a racing heart.

    Chronic with relapses

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    anxiety, abdominal pain (stomach ache), nausea, stomach bloating, depressed mood
    Symptoms that always occur with panic disorder:
    anxiety
    Symptoms that never occur with panic disorder:
    agoraphobia
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  5. 5.Normal Case of Vaginal Discharge

    Vaginal discharge is a common issue many women experience and is likely nothing to worry about. Your vaginal discharge can change depending on your menstrual cycle. Recent initiation or a change in contraceptives can also cause a temporary change in discharge.

    A few days

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    vaginal discharge, mild vaginal discharge, white/gray vaginal discharge, clear vaginal discharge, abdominal pain (stomach ache)
    Symptoms that always occur with normal case of vaginal discharge:
    vaginal discharge
    Symptoms that never occur with normal case of vaginal discharge:
    vaginal itch or burning, painful urination, severe vaginal discharge, vaginal pain, abdominal pain (stomach ache), bleeding after sex, missed period, vulvovaginal odor
    Urgency:
    Wait and watch

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  6. 6.Hypothyroidism

    Hypothyroidism occurs when the thyroid, a butterfly-shaped organ inside the neck, no longer produces adequate levels of hormones. Thyroid hormones are essential for many bodily functions including breathing, heart rate, and metabolism.

    Most cases of hypothyroidism require lifelong hormone replacement therapy.

    Rarity:
    Rare
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, depressed mood, difficulty concentrating, weight gain, muscle aches
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  7. 7.Overactive Thyroid

    The thyroid is a butterfly-shaped gland in the neck, just above your collarbone. It is one of your endocrine glands, which make hormones. Thyroid glands control how fast one burns calories and how fast the heart beats. If the thyroid is too active, it makes more thyroid hormones than the body needs. This is called hyperthyroidism.

    Great prognosis with high remission rates

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, anxiety, depressed mood, irritability, trouble sleeping
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  8. 8.Normal Case of Spotting

    Spotting is vaginal bleeding that occurs between periods. Many women experience spotting between periods and it is often nothing to worry about. Oral contraceptives (the pill) can cause spotting as a side effect, especially if they have a low estrogen dose, someone started on them recently or does not take them on the same time everyday. Additionally, hormone supplements that only contain estrogen (often used in menopause) can cause spotting as well.

    A few days

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    vaginal bleeding or bloody discharge, bloody vaginal discharge, mild unexpected vaginal bleeding, vaginal bleeding, vaginal discharge
    Symptoms that always occur with normal case of spotting:
    vaginal bleeding or bloody discharge
    Symptoms that never occur with normal case of spotting:
    severe unexpected vaginal bleeding, vaginal pain, vaginal itch or burning, bleeding after sex, severe abdominal pain
    Urgency:
    Wait and watch
  9. 9.Mild Chronic Depression (Dysthymia)

    Dysthymia, also called persistent depressive disorder, is a form of depression that is chronic. The causes of dysthymia are complex, and often are a combination of biological, genetic, and environmental factors. Dysthymia can interfere with everyday life, and people with this condition report feeling loss of interest in their daily activities, sadness, hopelessness, and a lack of energy.

    Dysthymia can last indefinitely.

    Rarity:
    Uncommon
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, depressed mood, irritability, difficulty concentrating, impaired social or occupational functioning
    Symptoms that always occur with mild chronic depression (dysthymia):
    depressed mood
    Symptoms that never occur with mild chronic depression (dysthymia):
    severe sadness
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor
  10. 10.Recurrent Depression

    Depression, once diagnosed, can often recur with new episodes. Sometimes these episodes can be similar to ones in the past, sometimes the symptoms can be different. It's good to be aware off the fact that people who had a depression before, remain vulnerable.

    Depression's course is highly variable, and it may last weeks, months, or years.

    Rarity:
    Common
    Top Symptoms:
    fatigue, abdominal pain (stomach ache), nausea, headache, stomach bloating
    Urgency:
    Primary care doctor

Questions Your Doctor May Ask About Derealization

  • Q.Any fever today or during the last week?
  • Q.Do you currently smoke?
  • Q.Have you experienced any nausea?
  • Q.Have you been feeling more tired than usual, lethargic or fatigued despite sleeping a normal amount?

If you've answered yes to one or more of these questions, try our derealization symptom checker to find out more.

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Derealization Symptom Checker Statistics

  • People who have experienced derealization have also experienced:

    • 5% Fatigue
    • 3% Headache
    • 2% Bloody Vaginal Discharge
  • People who have experienced derealization were most often matched with:

    • 42% Depersonalization / Derealization Identity Disorder
    • 4% Depression
    • 4% Fibromyalgia
  • Source: Aggregated and anonymized results from visits to the Buoy AI health assistant (check it out by clicking on “Take Quiz”).

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