Have you ever ever noticed how our mind tends to float whenever now we have a gradual day on the office?
Or maybe you enjoy spending your free time in bed, looking on the ceiling and that imagining different scenarios.
For a few of us, fantasy is a way of discovering creative options to sophisticated problems. Others, nonetheless, resort to maladaptive daydreaming as an alternative choice to the mundane points of reality.
While some attempt to show dreams into reality, others select to witness how reality fades within the shadow of grand fantasies.
The purpose is, we all have moments after we let our imagination loose and immerse ourselves in all types of fantasies.
Though consultants imagine daydreaming is a normal and comparatively healthy phenomenon, there are some who see it as a warning sign.
So, when does mind-wandering flip into maladaptive daydreaming?
What’s Maladaptive Daydreaming?
In accordance with some consultants, maladaptive daydreaming is "an extreme type of unwanted daydreaming that produces a rewarding experience based on a created fantasy of a parallel reality related to a profound sense of presence."
However leaving aside ‘textual contentbook’ definitions, maladaptive daydreaming refers to our tendency to immerse ourselves in fantasies; to escape in an imaginary world the place we can be no matter we want to be or do no matter we wish to do.
And you can probably imagine how tempting it's to ‘lose yourself’ in all kinds of imaginary eventualities, particularly when your reality may not be that exciting, stimulating, or rewarding.
Though clinicians have but to determine the factors that generate this problem, some consultants imagine maladaptive daydreaming can occur during childhood.
In other words, even from an early age, a few of us study to daydream and spend hours imagining a greater model of our selves and our environment. Maybe this coping mechanism – as maladaptive as it might be – helps us cope with the adversities that life occasionally throws down our path.
But as you may probably imagine, this strategy doesn’t solve the problem, and sooner or later, reality will slap us within the face.
Since maladaptive daydreaming isn’t listed in the Diagnostic and Statistical Guide of Mental Problems (DSM), researchers have paid little consideration to this condition.
As one 2016 paper printed in Consciousness and Cognition highlights, maladaptive daydreaming is an below-researched condition that should receive more consideration from the scientific community.
What Are Its Signs and Signs?
One of the questions that seem to be on everyone’s lips is - Where can we draw the road between healthy and maladaptive daydreaming?
On the one hand, it’s normal – even useful - to fantasize about all kinds of scenarios and perhaps come up with an motion plan. Alternatively, if you happen to spend too much time fantasizing, you risk losing time and energy on something that’s purely imaginary.
Luckily, specialists who’ve studied this condition have provide you with a list of symptoms that can allow you to decide in case you are the truth is coping with a problematic type of daydreaming.
Although the DSM-V doesn’t acknowledge maladaptive daydreaming as a mental disorder, Eliezer Somer – the scientific psychologist who recognized this situation – has developed a scale that measures abnormal fantasizing.
A current research revealed in Consciousness and Cognition revealed that the Maladaptive Daydreaming Scale (MDS) demonstrates good validity and internal consistency.
Such analysis instruments are crucial as they assist clinicians diagnose this condition and counsel an appropriate course of action.
Can Maladaptive Daydreaming Lead to Depression?
Just like every other emotional or behavioral problem, maladaptive daydreaming can generally accompany different issues.
One study printed in Frontiers in Psychiatry revealed that maladaptive daydreaming tends to accompany obsessive-compulsive symptoms.  In other words, our fixed fantasizing may be a ritual that alleviates your intrusive thoughts.
If we think about it, individuals with obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) are preoccupied continuously with uncontrollable obsessions (thoughts and ideas) that may not have anything to do with reality. For example, should you’re coping with a purely obsessional form of OCD, you'll be inclined to spend so much of time worrying about numerous worst-case scenarios. Basically, maladaptive daydreaming could possibly be nothing more than a symptom of OCD.
Some specialists believe fluvoxamine (an antidepressant used for obsessive-compulsive disorder) may be a viable therapy for maladaptive daydreaming.
One other type of psychological sickness that may hold the answer to why we have a tendency to interact in daydreaming is depression. For those of you who don’t know, melancholy is an emotional dysfunction that can impact our lives in a profoundly negative manner.
From a lack of energy and motivation to low vanity and an general ‘grim’ perspective on life, depressive problems can cause plenty of problems in our personal and professional life.
Individuals who wrestle with despair tend to ruminate a lot. In other words, they spend hours focusing on their negative ideas and that imagining various ‘grim’ scenarios. So just like in the case of OCD, maladaptive daydreaming could be the symptom of a broader pathology.
Lengthy story brief, there are cases when fixed fantasizing is part of a psychological problem and times when maladaptive daydreaming
could also be a ‘stand-alone’ condition.