Subclinical hallucinations and delusions in nonpsychotic adolescents

Heather Altman, Melinda Collins, Peter Clive Mundy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

91 Scopus citations


A number of studies have suggested that clinical populations of adolescents may report hallucinations and/or delusions without meeting criteria for a psychotic disorder. The purpose of this study was to provide information about the prevalence and symptom correlates of these subclinical hallucinations and delusions that occur in a nonpsychotic population of adolescents. Thirty-eight adolescents from a residential program and day treatment center were assessed with respect to hallucinatory experiences, ideas of reference, paranoid ideation, dissociative experiences, depressive symptomatology, and schizotypal cognitions. Results of this study indicated that 33% of the participants reported having experienced auditory hallucinations, and 24% reported having had delusional ideas. In addition, the results suggest that subclinical auditory hallucinations may have an especially strong relation with dissociative processes, whereas subclinical delusions appeared to be most strongly correlated with schizotypal thought processes. The results of this study begin to clarify the phenomenon of hallucinatory and delusional experiences in a nonpsychotic population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)413-420
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry and Allied Disciplines
Issue number4
StatePublished - May 1997
Externally publishedYes


  • Adolescent
  • Delusion
  • Hallucination

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology


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