A word that evokes a sense of anxiety in people when poorly understood. With the right information, it can be diagnosed and treated in a timely manner, which improves the prognosis of the disease. Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that affects how a person thinks, feels, and behaves. People who suffer from schizophrenia, may have difficulty distinguishing between what is real and what is imaginary. They may also have difficulty in expressing normal emotions in a social situation.
Schizophrenia is not the same as split personality or multiple personality. Symptoms mostly start between the ages of 16 and 30. Males tend to show symptoms at a slightly younger age than females. For many people the symptoms develop slowly over a period of time, wherein at times they are also confused with other disorders. However, there are also instances of a sudden acute start of the disorder.
SYMPTOMS The signs and symptoms of schizophrenia are different for everyone. The disease may come and go in cycles of relapse and remission. The major symptoms are commonly called 'Psychotic Symptoms'.
Other Symptoms are:
People who experiences one or more of these symptoms for more than two weeks should seek help immediately. CAUSES Schizophrenia may not have a single, definite known cause. It may have multiple causes that interrelate with each other.
TREATMENT There is no cure for schizophrenia as it is a life long illness. However, many people with this illness can lead productive and fulfilling lives with the proper treatment. Treatment aims to control symptoms. Treatment can help the patient to manage many of the symptoms of schizophrenia. It involves a combination of medication and supportive therapy.
Individual Therapy: helps the client to understand and change their behavior which helps them to adjust back into society. It helps them to function in their daily life and in social situations. Therapy can help them to cope with stress better, understand the early signs of a relapse and how to prolong periods of remission. Group therapy: helps the patient to express and share their experiences and concerns about the illness.
Managing Schizophrenia is possible. Like any other long term illness, it needs constant management. Working closely with mental health professionals can help to track the illness and get the most effective treatment.
It is important to remember that relapses can occur. In the course of treatment the individual and family members can learn to identify the early warning signs and seek help. The rate of relapse is higher if the person stops medication. A calm and upportive approach is very important. Being optimistic will help deal with the illness better.
Seek help immediately. BE OPTIMISTIC