Loss of a sense of aliveness, bodily unhomeliness and radical estrangement: A phenomenological inquiry into service users’ experiences of psychiatric medication use in the treatment of early psychosis

PhD Thesis


Bögle, S. (2023). Loss of a sense of aliveness, bodily unhomeliness and radical estrangement: A phenomenological inquiry into service users’ experiences of psychiatric medication use in the treatment of early psychosis. PhD Thesis London South Bank University School of Applied Sciences https://doi.org/10.18744/lsbu.933zx
AuthorsBögle, S.
TypePhD Thesis
Abstract

Quantitative research drawing on the disease-centred model of psychiatric drug action dominates research on psychiatric medication, while little is known about service users’ subjective, embodied experiences of taking psychiatric medication. This research explored service users’ felt, embodied and relational experiences of psychiatric medication use in the
treatment of early psychosis using a multimodal, longitudinal research design. A more in-depth understanding of what it is like and what it means to take psychiatric medication from
service users’ idiographic perspectives is needed to improve the clinical care and support service users receive and better understand the treatment choices they make. Ten participants between the age of 18 and 30 years were recruited from London-based NHS Early Intervention in Psychosis services and participated in in-depth idiographic interviews. Eight participants took part in a follow-up interview between six and nine months later. Visual methods were used to explore the verbal as well as the pre-reflective, embodied aspects of participants’ medication experiences. The data was analysed using a combination of interpretative phenomenological analysis and framework analysis. While taking psychiatric medication, participants reported the loss of a sense of aliveness, feelings of radical estrangement from themselves, the world and other people and a sense of being suspended in a liminal, time-locked dimension in which they felt unable to transition from past
experiences of psychosis to future recovery. The findings of this study highlight the highly distressing and adverse iatrogenic effects of psychiatric medication use, including medication-induced coporealisation, disembodiment, estrangement and a loss of belonging. More holistic, human rights-based, recovery-oriented and body-centred ways of treating psychosis are needed.

Year2023
PublisherLondon South Bank University
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.18744/lsbu.933zx
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Print31 Jan 2023
Publication process dates
Deposited15 Feb 2023
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‘It was like a lightning bolt hitting my world’: Feeling shattered in a first crisis in psychosis
Bögle, S. and Boden, Z. (2019). ‘It was like a lightning bolt hitting my world’: Feeling shattered in a first crisis in psychosis. Qualitative Research in Psychology. 19 (2), pp. 377-404. https://doi.org/10.1080/14780887.2019.1631418