Ten Schizophrenia Facts You Should Know

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There are many myths and misconceptions surrounding schizophrenia and too many people are still unaware of the basic facts and this is despite massive campaigns by governments, organisations and charities aiming to educate the general public about this severe and complex mental disorder.

Schizophrenia is characterised by psychosis (hallucinations and delusions) and disorganised thought processes along with other symptoms such as a ‘flattening’ of emotions and speech, apathy, social withdrawal and a lack of interest in life. Not everyone experiences the same symptoms and the severity of the symptoms can vary significantly from person to person.

The following are ten important facts about schizophrenia that might help people gain a greater insight and understanding of schizophrenia.

1. Schizophrenia is not ‘split personality’ as some people still believe, people with schizophrenia have problems interpreting reality but they do not have multiple personalities. Consequently many professionals would like to see the name changed to something more appropriate

2. There are many different sub types of schizophrenia depending on what the most dominant symptoms are. Scientists now believe that schizophrenia may be a whole range of disorders as opposed to just one condition

3. Although there is no cure for schizophrenia, around 25% of those who develop schizophrenia will go on to make a full recovery and others will experience periods of remission where there are no symptoms at all. People with schizophrenia are not psychotic all the time.

4. The earlier treatment for schizophrenia begins, the better the long term outlook. It is therefore important to get help as soon as possible after developing the first signs of schizophrenia

5. People with schizophrenia are no more likely to be violent and aggressive than other members of the public. Indeed, there is more likely to be violence and aggression from people intoxicated with alcohol or who are under the influence of some street drugs. When experiencing delusions and hallucinations, a person with schizophrenia may mistakenly believe that others are out to harm them and so will try to defend themselves. They need to be treated with calm and understanding.

6. People with schizophrenia can still work, have families, maintain close relationships and be involved in social situations and many do but the stigma that still surrounds schizophrenia often prevents this

7. There is a higher risk of developing schizophrenia if there is a close family member who has already been diagnosed with the condition but you don’t have to have it in the family to develop it

8. Taking drugs does not cause schizophrenia but it can worsen the symptoms and trigger schizophrenia earlier in predisposed individuals

9. Schizophrenia is a brain disorder where many different factors interplay. Contrary to what many people believe, it is NOT caused by poor parenting skills

10. We should all be aware of the facts surrounding schizophrenia as it is not that rare, affecting roughly one in a hundred people across the world. Therefore there is every chance that we will come across it in our family, through our friends socially, or in the workplace at some point in our lives.

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1 Comment

  1. Funky
    Posted April 13, 2009 at 11:33 am | Permalink

    I actually wanted to leave a comment on your personal journey with depression but there isn’t a comment box so I’m leaving it here if that’s ok.
    I just wanted to say a huge thank you for your very informative post. I’ve looked at the website where I can purchase the epa dha capsules & will be doing so as soon as I have enough funds in my account **smiles**

    I found your comments really helpful. Having lost my grandson to congenital heart defect (HLHS) last June I’ve noticed myself becoming increasingly depressed.
    Like you I’ve dealt with depression on & off for most of my life which started in childhood. The details I’ll spare you……I, like a lot of people I guess just trudge on & deny the crap that is going on in their lives.

    Sometimes I felt suicidal & I feel that a lot lately…..but I have a large family which I have to keep going for. When I get to feeling so low I find ways to get through it all……but it doesn’t go away does it? it stays dormant waiting to rear it’s ugly head once more.

    I also joined my local gym late July 08 & notice the negative effects when I fail to attend for more than 8 or 9 days………something I need to get back to. My diet is eratic…….but I’ve noticed when I eat certain foods (what I’d call rubbish food) my mood takes a giant dip & the suicidal thoughts are back once more.
    So I’m going to look again & again at your post & see the things I really need to be doing…….along of course with ordering the fish supplements that you recommend.

    Anyway, I just wanted to say thank you so much for taking the time to build this site where so much valuable information can be got. I really do appreciate it.
    ((hugs)) Funky x

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