Signs of Schizophrenia: What’s Really Happening

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Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that affects more than 24 million people worldwide. The signs of schizophrenia are not always obvious. Schizophrenia can be difficult to diagnose because its signs and symptoms may mimic other conditions or psychiatric disorders, such as bipolar disorder, major depressive disorder, anxiety disorders, personality disorders, substance abuse problems, and medical illnesses. Since the signs are often hard to spot at first glance many people with this condition do not get the help they need until it’s too late.

The brain is an organ in your body that controls how you think and feel by sending messages through nerves to different parts of your body. It also controls things like memory and movement. When someone has schizophrenia their brain sends messages differently than the brain of a person who doesn’t have schizophrenia.

What is Schizophrenia??

Schizophrenia is a chronic and severe mental disorder that affects how you think, feel, and behave. It causes distorted thinking, strange feelings, and unusual behavior. People with schizophrenia may seem like they have lost touch with reality. Sometimes people believe someone is plotting against them or are being followed when these thoughts are not actually happening to the person.

Symptoms of Schizophrenia:

Schizophrenia is a very serious condition that can have severe consequences if not treated. People with schizophrenia often struggle to tell apart what is real from what isn’t real and may experience hallucinations, delusions, disorganized speech or behavior, lack of motivation and apathy. Symptoms usually manifest between the ages of 16 and 30.

Research has shown that the brains of people with schizophrenia are different from those without it because there is a loss of gray matter in specific brain areas, including the frontal lobe and temporal lobe regions. The size of these losses can be seen on MRI scans – but not everyone with this condition will have them so they aren’t considered an effective diagnostic tool.

Treatment and Prevention:

There is currently no cure for schizophrenia, but with treatment it can be managed successfully and some people may never experience another episode after the initial one. Antipsychotic medicine (also called neuroleptics) usually work best to reduce or control hallucinations, delusions, disorganized speech/behavior, lack of motivation and/or apathy. Other types of treatment may include: social skills training, supportive counseling, cognitive therapy and vocational services.

It’s important to know that you’re not alone if you are experiencing signs of schizophrenia, talk with your doctor about the best way to move forward in getting help for yourself or others. If someone is in immediate danger call your local emergency services (911 in the US) and ask for help.

If you think someone might be experiencing schizophrenia, but their behavior doesn’t seem immediately dangerous don’t confront them about it or take matters into your own hands – this can lead to violence and/or imprisonment of that person which may make things worse than before. Instead, bring up your concerns with their loved ones or try to get them in touch with a medical professional.

Always be supportive and understanding of people who are reported by others for having schizophrenia – it’s not always easy living with this condition so just because someone doesn’t seem “normal” that is no reason for you to treat them harshly.

The Signs of Schizophrenia

The signs of schizophrenia are what someone experiences when their brain sends unusual messages to different parts of their body. These signs can be difficult to spot immediately because they may not happen every day or all at once for some people with this condition. It’s important to remember that no two cases of schizophrenia are the same. Some signs a person with schizophrenia may face include:

  • Hearing voices or seeing things that aren’t there
  • Having trouble telling the difference between what’s real and what is imaginary
  • Difficulty with concentration, memory, and decision making
  • Negative symptoms such as not speaking much or feeling emotionless for long periods of time
  • Extreme reactions to small problems or unimportant things

Treatment for schizophrenia

Many people with schizophrenia have recovered normal functioning and no longer experience symptoms after treatment. A combination of antipsychotic medication and psychosocial treatments are usually used to treat schizophrenia, with the most effective being long-term or continuous antipsychotics.

Cognitive behavioral therapy

CBT is also often helpful in treating this condition because it focuses on changing thoughts patterns which can lead to problematic behaviors. Treatment for schizophrenia is important because the condition can make it hard for a person to function normally in society.

Factors of risk

Genetic research suggests that schizophrenia may be caused by a combination of environmental and genetic factors, but there is still no concrete information available about what causes this condition.

Schizophrenia affects men and women equally – schizophrenia usually starts between the ages of 16-30 years old

Having close relatives with schizophrenia increases your risk for developing it as well (especially if you’re an identical twin)

People who have experienced a severe head injury or drug abuse are at higher risk for developing schizophrenia

Avoiding any illegal drugs can reduce your chances of getting this condition as well, but some people do use marijuana without having negative consequences. A lot of the time it’s impossible to tell what causes someone to develop schizophrenia so early detection and treatment are important for everyone.

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Diagnosis of the Mental illness

Lack of awareness is common in people who have schizophrenia. They usually don’t recognize that they have a problem and it can be difficult to convince them of the importance of getting help.

The only way to diagnose schizophrenia is through a clinical interview which includes family, friends, or others who know about their behavior – there are no blood tests available for this condition at this time. Finding out whether someone has schizophrenia is important because it can be very helpful in treating this disorder.

Causes Of Schizophrenia

Numerous studies have suggested that schizophrenia is likely caused by a combination of genetic, environmental and social factors. However, because there are many common symptoms among people who do not suffer from this disorder, it has been difficult to pinpoint the exact causes of schizophrenia in every case.

Schizophrenia usually begins between ages 16-30 years old – men and women are affected equally

The risk of schizophrenia is higher in people who have close family members with the disorder (especially identical twins)

Negative symptoms of schizophrenia

Negative symptoms of schizophrenia can often appear years before a patient goes into an acute schizophrenic event. They are also associated with a lack of interest in social activities and an overall withdrawal from society.

The symptoms of schizophrenia usually last for at least six months – people who suffer from this disorder may experience delusions, hallucinations, disorganized thoughts, or incoherent speech patterns

Many patients have difficulty thinking clearly because of these psychotic behaviors which can lead to an inability to concentrate and perform everyday tasks. People with schizophrenia may also experience negative symptoms such as loss of interest in regular activities, reduced energy, or losing touch with reality on some days but not others.

Some negative symptoms of Schizophrenia include:

  • Apathy
  • Poor self-care
  • Lack of motivation
  • Limited emotional expression

Helping someone who may have schizophrenia

If you believe anyone with schizophrenia may need help, it is important to speak with a doctor as soon as possible. Finding the right treatment is essential because this illness can make daily life difficult for those who suffer from it.

Is it a split personality disorder? / Is it multiple personalities?

No, schizophrenia is not multiple personality disorder.

The major difference between the two mental health conditions is that people with this mental illness have trouble discerning what is real from what isn’t while those who suffer from dissociative identity disorder are able to differentiate between their own thoughts and feelings as well as other identities within themselves.

The five types of Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is a mental health condition that can lead to different types of symptoms.

The five main categories include: catatonic, paranoid, disorganized, undifferentiated and residual schizophrenia – all of which have several subcategories associated with them.

Catatonia Symptoms of Schizophrenia

Patients who suffer from this disorder may experience symptoms of catatonia.

Catatonic schizophrenia is the most difficult subtype to treat because it can cause several psychiatric problems such as:

  • Inappropriate or unusual motor behavior which includes rigidity, stupor and posturing • Severe changes in a person’s mood or emotions including excitement or depression
  • Lack of response to outside stimuli
  • Extreme negativism which include resistance to instructions or external stimulus

Paranoid Schizophrenia Symptoms

Patients who have paranoid schizophrenia are usually struggling with the subtype known as Paranoid Type. The major symptoms associated with this condition may include:

  • Delusions about other people, institutions and situations that have no basis in reality
  • Paranoia is a major symptom of this condition and can often lead to violent behavior or self-destructive acts • Hallucinations are also present for many people with paranoid schizophrenia which may cause them to act out violently against other individuals or objects.

Disorganized Schizophrenia Symptoms

This subtype includes the major symptoms of disorganized speech, flat affect and inappropriate behavior.

  • A patient may go off track during a conversation or start speaking in gibberish
  • They often make little sense when they are talking which can be frustrating for both the patient as well as those around them
  • Lack of emotion is also associated with this disorder which makes it difficult for many people to understand what the person is trying to say or express.

Undifferentiated Schizophrenia Symptoms

Patients who suffer from undifferentiated schizophrenia often have symptoms that overlap with other types of this mental illness which can make it more difficult for them and those around them to get an accurate diagnosis. This means they are likely suffering from more than one type of this mental illness.

Residual Schizophrenia Symptoms

Patients who have residual schizophrenia are no longer experiencing the active symptoms that come with other types of this disorder which means they are in remission.

However, there are still several problems associated with this condition including:

  • These patients may be at a higher risk of suicide than other people who do not suffer from this mental illness
  • Although they are in remission, the symptoms may return at any time which means it is important to keep an eye out for signs
  • Many patients with residual schizophrenia have trouble concentrating and remembering information so memory problems can be another symptom associated with this disorder.
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Is Schizophrenia Hereditary?

While there are several factors that may contribute to someone developing schizophrenia, genetics plays an important role.

There have been many studies which suggest the following mental health conditions can be hereditary:

  • Schizoaffective disorder
  • Bipolar type I and II disorders
  • Depression with psychotic symptoms. But it is also important to keep in mind that not all cases of schizophrenia are hereditary.

Schizophrenia: Is it a serious mental illness?

Schizophrenia is a serious mental illness which can make it difficult for the person who suffers from this disorder to function in their daily life.

When it comes to mental health, many people believe that schizophrenia is a disorder that makes it impossible for the individual to function at all.

However, this isn’t always true and most patients with this condition can live their lives as they normally would if they are able to get treatment early on in the process.

Psychotic Symptoms of Schizophrenia

According to the DSM-IV, psychotic symptoms are present for patients who have schizophrenia and include:

  • Hallucinations such as seeing something that isn’t there or hearing sounds that no one else can hear
  • Delusions are common psychotic symptoms, which may be bizarre in nature and not based on anything real or factual • Disorganized speech and thinking
  • Flat affect or a complete lack of emotion in some cases • Inappropriate behavior and the inability to respond appropriately when they are in social situations

Uncommon symptoms of schizophrenia include:

  • Catatonia is a state where the patient goes into an almost trance-like state that makes it difficult for them to communicate with others
  • Stupor or being unable to move or respond
  • Agitation – acting violently, moving around constantly and having trouble sleeping are all signs of agitation. While this can be present in other types of mental illness, it is more common in schizophrenia
  • Retardation – patients with this disorder may not be able to learn or function at the same level as others around them which can contribute to their lack of social skills and trouble communicating.

Schizophrenia Symptoms vs Depression Symptoms

Schizophrenia symptoms are different than depression symptoms and it is important to get an accurate diagnosis from a mental health professional so the right treatment can be provided and symptoms do not go untreated.

Depression: While depression often involves negative thoughts, feelings of sadness and self-loathing , schizophrenia has little to do with these emotions . In fact, people who suffer from this disorder may feel as if they are on top of the world and full of energy.

Schizophrenia: When it comes to schizophrenia, an individual may hear voices that no one else can hear or see things that don’t exist . They also may believe there is a conspiracy against them which makes them act out in certain ways. Depression symptoms involve self-loathing and suicidal thoughts which are not present in schizophrenia.

Depression is also more likely to occur when someone cannot get their emotions under control, while this isn’t necessarily true for people with schizophrenia.

Schizophrenia may involve flat affect or a complete lack of emotion , but depression often involves the exact opposite feelings like sadness and hopelessness . People with schizophrenia often have trouble connecting with others, but those who suffer from depression may be very involved in relationships and friendships.

Cognitive symptoms of schizophrenia

While depression often involves memory loss and difficulty concentrating, this symptom is not as common among those with schizophrenia.

Many people who struggle with psychosis will have trouble remembering things they recently heard or saw . They also may be unable to focus for very long which can make it difficult for them to finish tasks at work and school.   Schizophrenia can also cause an individual to struggle with other cognitive issues like losing their train of thought quickly during conversations.

Schizophrenia Symptoms in Men vs Women

While this mental illness does affect both men and women, there are some differences between the two genders when it comes to schizophrenia symptoms . The biggest difference is that women will often experience more delusions than men, who are more likely to experience auditory hallucinations .

Schizophrenia Symptoms in Children vs Adults

Children with this disorder will often have different symptoms of schizophrenia compared to adults. For example , they may hear voices that no one else can hear or see things that aren’t there. They also may appear frightened by these visions which can lead to agitation.

This mental illness can cause an array of problems in adults including odd behavior, trouble sleeping and withdrawing from social situations . Children may also become withdrawn which could lead them to start missing school or other activities they previously enjoyed.

Symptoms of schizophrenia are different for everyone who deals with it, but there are some commonalities that are often seen with the illness.


Schizophrenia is a mental illness that causes people to lose touch with reality . It can cause hallucinations and delusions which make it very difficult for them to function in their everyday lives.

This article does not intend to provide medical advice. If an individual is suffering from any of these schizophrenia symptoms, they should consult a mental health professional immediately.

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