For a very long time, and throughout recorded history, the mental disorder that we now call schizophrenia was looked upon with fright and bewilderment. Many who had schizophrenia in the past were thought to be possessed by the devil and were ostracized by their communities. Today, a lot more is known about this debilitating brain disorder. Still, schizophrenia can baffle both medical professionals and everyday people.
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People suffering from schizophrenia can have the quality of their everyday lives severely diminish. They can suffer a wide array of symptoms that are not only disabling but can prevent them from leading normal lives. Many who have been diagnosed with schizophrenia have a hard time holding a job, taking care of themselves, and often need assistance from others that can provide them with reliable care.
The symptoms of this severe chronic disorder can range between three different sets, classified as positive symptoms, negative symptoms, and cognitive symptoms.
Positive symptoms are psychotic behaviors that are not observed in normal people. They include:
Negative symptoms of schizophrenia are slightly harder to identify, as they are basic disruptions with a person's normal emotions and behaviors. They include:
Cognitive symptoms are a lot like negative symptoms and can also be hard to recognize. These types of symptoms are often discovered by a variety of tests and evaluations that a doctor can perform. They include:
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that can be caused by a number of factors. Many believe that there is no single cause for this illness. Rather, genetics, the environment, and the individual's brain structure and chemistry can all be causes of schizophrenia.
Diagnosing schizophrenia is a complicated process, and while there are no explicit tests for schizophrenia, information gathered from a number of sources can help ascertain which illness the patient has.
Treatment for schizophrenia is entirely dependent on the diagnosis made for each case.
People with schizophrenia are at a much higher risk to develop substance abuse, depression, anxiety disorder, or thoughts or attempts at suicide. Ensuring that there aren't any other mental problems evident in the patient, in addition to schizophrenia, is imperative when determining proper treatment.
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