All the world’s fears

Scientists don’t have the faintest idea what causes the manias that ruin our lives

If your girlfriend was annoying you yesterday with stories about how she was abducted by aliens, or planning to go to Alla Pugacheva’s birthday party today, don’t be quick to accuse her of lying and ridicule her. It turns out a persistent craving to contrive tall tales is a serious illness called mythomania. There are hundreds of similar illnesses. Sometimes the manias are innocuous while at other times they are quite dangerous.

The situation can become especially dangerous when a mania seizes hold of an individual and then takes control of their friends and colleagues. Moscow psychiatrist and candidate of Medical Sciences, Viktor Brutman, spends his life researching such phenomena.

Dostoyevsky, AKA Cuboman

KP: Mr. Brutman, what types of manias are there?

Brutman: There are many types of contrasting manias, including the well-known graphomania and narcomania. Russians often suffer from dipsomania – an uncontrollable craving for alcohol that is in no way related to alcoholism. Light drinkers are the most common victims of this disorder. Completely out of the blue, once every 6 months or several years, people are struck by the mania. It can last anywhere from a few days to several years. READ MORE

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