Can you get hallucinations of smell and touch?

26 September 2010

Question

If you can get auditory and visual hallucinations, can you get ones that make you believe you can smell or touch things?

Answer

We put this question to Professor Paul Fletcher...

Paul - You certainly can - you can get hallucinations in any sensory modality. You can get hallucinations of taste, smell, touch, as well as visual and auditory. In fact, in certain cases of mental illness, hallucinations of smell can be exceedingly unpleasant and people can have the belief that they're actually rotting from the inside.

Chris - That's not very pleasant.

Paul - It sounds horrible.

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