Being in a process of transition to psychosis, as narrated by adults with psychotic illnesses acutely admitted to hospital
To assist in improving early interventions for psychosis, this study explored how adult people narrated their experience of becoming psychotic, and how contact with mental health personnel was established. Narrative interviews were conducted with 12 participants with psychotic illnesses recruited from acute psychiatric wards. The interviews were content analysed. Participants described being in a process of transition to psychosis as follows: experiencing changes as well-known signs of psychosis, experiencing sudden unexpected changes as signs of psychosis and experiencing unidentified changes as signs of illness. Our results show that participants and their close others who knew the signs of psychosis established a dialogue with mental health personnel and were better equipped to prevent and mitigate the psychosis. Our results demonstrate that participants who did not perceive the signs of psychosis and did not have other people to advocate for them were at risk for delayed treatment, poor communication and coercive interventions. Furthermore, participants who did not know the signs of psychosis perceived these changes as deterioration in their health and awareness of illness.We suggest that participants’ experiential knowledge of transitioning to psychosis and an awareness of illness can be used to improve the communication during interventions for psychosis.