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Schizophrenia Tips

Schizophrenia - Knowing The Types & Ways To Deal With Them!

MBBS, Diploma In Psychological Medicine, Diploma In National Board In Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Navi Mumbai
Schizophrenia - Knowing The Types & Ways To Deal With Them!

Schizophrenia affects over 1% of the world’s population and affects the way a person thinks, feels and behaves. In most cases, it is diagnosed when a person is between the ages of 16 to 25. This condition can be hereditary and is said to affect men more often than women. Schizophrenia is characterized by an inability to distinguish between real and imaginary which can lead to delusions, social withdrawal, hallucinations and other forms of social and occupational dysfunction.

Schizophrenia affects different people in different ways. On the basis of the type of symptoms exhibited, this disease has been categorized into 5 sub types. These are:

  1. Paranoid schizophrenia: This type of schizophrenia is characterized by delusions and hallucinations that may make the person exhibit paranoid behaviour. These people often feel like they are being watched or followed and may have delusions of grandeur. They may also get angry quickly on minor issues and show signs of anxiety and hostility.
  2. Disorganized schizophrenia: In such cases, the person may behave in ways that are difficult to understand or speak in broken sentences and have difficulty structuring a sentence. They may also display inappropriate behaviour and react in ways not suitable to the occasion. People suffering from disorganized schizophrenia may also neglect their personal hygiene.
  3. Catatonic schizophrenia: People suffering from catatonic schizophrenia may swing between immobility and periods of rapid movement. They may stay quiet for hours or talk rapidly repeating everything they hear. These people have a high risk of harming themselves as they are usually unable to look after themselves and complete daily activities.
  4. Undifferentiated schizophrenia: People suffering from this type of schizophrenia exhibit behaviour that fits into more than one type of schizophrenia. From time to time they may have hallucinations, suffer from delusions or display catatonic behaviour and disorganized behaviour or speech.
  5. Residual schizophrenia: Even though a person may not be currently showcasing any signs of schizophrenia, they are said to have residual schizophrenia. Such people need to have had at least one schizophrenic episode. These people may exhibit symptoms later or be in complete remission.

With schizophrenia, an early diagnosis can make treatment easier and hence if you notice anyone exhibiting signs of schizophrenia, you must advise them to seek medical help immediately. Schizophrenia cannot be cured but it can be managed with a combination of typical or atypical medication and cognitive therapy. The latter can be in the form of self-help groups, housing and employment programs, counselling and therapy.

2 people found this helpful

5 Types Of Schizophrenia You Need To Be Aware Of!

Dr. Amol Kelkar 87% (10 ratings)
MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Akola
5 Types Of Schizophrenia You Need To Be Aware Of!

Schizophrenia affects over 1% of the world’s population and affects the way a person thinks, feels and behaves. In most cases, it is diagnosed when a person is between the ages of 16 to 25. This condition can be hereditary and is said to affect men more often than women. Schizophrenia is characterized by an inability to distinguish between real and imaginary which can lead to delusions, social withdrawal, hallucinations and other forms of social and occupational dysfunction.

Schizophrenia affects different people in different ways. On the basis of the type of symptoms exhibited, this disease has been categorized into 5 sub types. These are:

  1. Paranoid schizophrenia: This type of schizophrenia is characterized by delusions and hallucinations that may make the person exhibit paranoid behaviour. These people often feel like they are being watched or followed and may have delusions of grandeur. They may also get angry quickly on minor issues and show signs of anxiety and hostility.
  2. Disorganized schizophrenia: In such cases, the person may behave in ways that are difficult to understand or speak in broken sentences and have difficulty structuring a sentence. They may also display inappropriate behaviour and react in ways not suitable to the occasion. People suffering from disorganized schizophrenia may also neglect their personal hygiene.
  3. Catatonic schizophrenia: People suffering from catatonic schizophrenia may swing between immobility and periods of rapid movement. They may stay quiet for hours or talk rapidly repeating everything they hear. These people have a high risk of harming themselves as they are usually unable to look after themselves and complete daily activities.
  4. Undifferentiated schizophrenia: People suffering from this type of schizophrenia exhibit behaviour that fits into more than one type of schizophrenia. From time to time they may have hallucinations, suffer from delusions or display catatonic behaviour and disorganized behaviour or speech.
  5. Residual schizophrenia: Even though a person may not be currently showcasing any signs of schizophrenia, they are said to have residual schizophrenia. Such people need to have had at least one schizophrenic episode. These people may exhibit symptoms later or be in complete remission.

With schizophrenia, an early diagnosis can make treatment easier and hence if you notice anyone exhibiting signs of schizophrenia, you must advise them to seek medical help immediately. Schizophrenia cannot be cured but it can be managed with a combination of typical or atypical medication and cognitive therapy. The latter can be in the form of self-help groups, housing and employment programs, counselling and therapy.

2469 people found this helpful

Schizophrenia - What Are The Types Of It?

Punah Santulan 88% (40 ratings)
Psychiatrist, Delhi
Schizophrenia - What Are The Types Of It?

Schizophrenia has been recognized as a mental disorder that combines symptoms like hallucinations with distorted thinking and others like fright and severe paranoia. This condition is one that gets progressively worse over time and leads to delusional thinking. Oversleeping and complaining of fatigue are usually the earliest signs of this condition's onset. Eventually, it becomes a debilitating factor in the life of the patient, who will not be able to function in a normal way due to the severe symptoms.

Read on to know more about the types and causes of this condition:

  1. Genetic Causes: Schizophrenia may be caused due to genetic factors and it may be a learned or inherited disorder. It is known to affect patients who have a parent or a sibling who may have suffered from this condition. Yet, one must also remember that Schizophrenia can only be influenced by genetics, and not determined by the same.
  2. Environmental Causes: When there has been an exposure to a viral infection during the pre natal stage, the patient is susceptible to this condition. Also, it may affect children who have been subject to the loss of a parent or separation at an early age. Physical and emotional abuse in one's childhood may also bring on this condition. Low level of oxygen at the time of birth is one of the causes of this condition in many patients.
  3. Anomalies in Brain Structure: When the brain ventricles of the patient are enlarged, he or she may be prone to this condition. Also, anomalies in the temporal lobes and amygdala have links with the onset of this condition.
  4. Types: A wide variety of mental and medical conditions can manifest with psychotic symptoms that must be considered in the differential diagnosis of schizophreniform disorder. These include psychotic disorder due to another medical condition or its treatment; delirium or major neurocognitive disorder; substance/medication-induced psychotic disorder or delirium; depressive or bipolar disorder with psychotic features; schizoaffective disorder; other specified or unspecified bipolar and related disorder; depressive or bipolar disorder with catatonic features; schizophrenia; brief psychotic disorder; delusional disorder; other specified or unspecified schizophrenia spectrum and other psychotic disorder; schizotypal, schizoid, or paranoid personality disorders; autism spectrum disorder; disorders presenting in childhood with disorganized speech; attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder; obsessive-compulsive disorder; posttraumatic stress disorder; and traumatic brain injury.

    Since the diagnostic criteria for schizophreniform disorder and schizophrenia differ primarily in duration of illness, the discussion of the differential diagnosis of schizophrenia also applies to schizophreniform disorder. 

Brief psychotic disorder. Schizophreniform disorder differs in duration from brief psychotic disorder, which has a duration of less than 1 month.

Residual Schizophrenia is a condition where the patient does not experience the various debilitating symptoms of the condition, and is on the road to recovery. Yet, even in this type of Schizophrenia, the patient will not really show any interest in life and the activities around him or her. Finally, the last type of Schizophrenia is Schizoaffective Disorder which is characterised by the symptoms of Schizophrenia as well as the symptoms of major mood disorders. When combined, this condition can lead to major complications and complex behavior.

A patient suffering from this condition will need to see a mental health specialist like a psychiatrist or a psychologist on an immediate basis. The treatment will be carried out on a long term basis for the results to start appearing.

4166 people found this helpful

What Is Schizophrenia And What Can Be The Reason Behind It?

MD - Psychiatry, MBBS
Psychiatrist, Nagpur
What Is Schizophrenia And What Can Be The Reason Behind It?

Schizophrenia is a disease of the mind that is usually degenerative in nature. The complex disorder is generally characterized by symptoms, such as delusions, hallucinations (both auditory and visual) and disturbances in speech and is usually chronic in nature. The symptoms are not regular and can appear at any point of time. So it is highly possible that a person suffering from schizophrenia may sometimes bear resemblance to any other normal person and all of a sudden, might exhibit symptoms typical of Schizophrenia.

The causes of Schizophrenia include:

  1. Brain Dysfunction: Abnormalities in the cerebral cortex (the cerebrum’s outer covering that is vital in regulating consciousness) of the brain is the most common cause of this disorder. This is due to the presence of abnormally enlarged ventricles in that region. The decreased brain size owing to the enlarged ventricles is often related to the hallucinations and delusions experienced by schizophrenics.
  2. Genetic Factors: Studies have also stated ‘genetics’ to be an important cause behind this disorder. Closer the family ties, higher the risks of transmitting the disorder.
  3. Biochemical Factors: More than one neurotransmitter is being targeted by recent drugs to control schizophrenia.


Symptoms which most people do not experience normally, but are found in people diagnosed with schizophrenia are said to be positive symptoms. They are:

  1. Hallucinations: These are sensory experiences of things that do not exist outside the mind. Hallucinations usually manifest in the form of auditory or visual images.
  2. Delusions: Delusions on the other hand are false beliefs one has about oneself. Delusions are of 3 major types:
    • Grandeur: Wherein the person imagines himself to be a famous personality
    • Persecution: The belief that somebody somewhere is plotting against you and the whole world is going to get you.
    • Control: The belief that a larger force, let’s say a witch, a demon or even a duck for that matter is controlling your actions.

These positive symptoms generally respond well to medications.
In addition to this, schizophrenics think and speak differently than the rest of the society. They jump from idea to idea, lose track of speech mid-way and often speak in fragmented and haphazardly joined sentences. They are, in fact, unable to fix their attention on anything in particular.
Examples of the most common negative symptoms include:

  1. The flat effect: The individual basically shows no facial expression and always has a flat emotionless mask on while staring into space. At times, they have inappropriate reactions to situations. Example - they might laugh at somebody's death and cry ad get angry when something good happens. 
  2. Avolition: This condition occurs when the individual just sit for hours doing nothing as well as behaves in a way lacking any motivation or enthusiasm.
2 people found this helpful

Paranoia - All You Need To Know About It!

Dr. Nisha Khanna 88% (51 ratings)
Ph. D - Psychology
Psychologist, Delhi
Paranoia - All You Need To Know About It!

Paranoia is a state characterized by a chronic sense of anxiety and mistrust. Some forms of paranoia affect only one particular aspect of a person’s life, whereas, other might be generalized and may interfere with decision-making and relationships. It is due to deep-rooted insecurity, or feelings of doubt about the partner’s commitment and faithfulness in the relationship.

Individuals with paranoia are generally found to be mistrusting others, feel on the verge of harm, very much reluctant to confide in others, bearing grudges, or even find demeaning or threatening subtext in even the most innocent comments or events. They are socially isolated, have difficulty in forgiving, argumentative and possess a defensive attitude in response to imagined criticism.

Even though Paranoia in a relationship is very common and can happen to anyone, it doesn’t mean that one should put up with it. It is essential to understand the reasons for its manifestation because a relationship cannot withstand the negativity that comes with these feelings and will often come to an end, causing much pain to the individuals involved.

One of the major reasons for being paranoid is the inability to let go off a past relationship. Thus, having a bad experience, such as being deceived or taken advantage of, could lead to the paranoid thought of history repeating itself. It causes the individual to be alert at all times and unable to relax, as certain similar incidents may trigger again reminding of the past event and its consequences, especially when you are thinking about them. It is also important to note that at times anxiety and paranoia get suppressed when you have gone through a breakup, but they can rear back in the head when you have patched up or started afresh.

At times past experiences shape us in a way that we believe the world is a bad place and therefore good things don’t last. It is a type of a self-fulfilling prophecy where you feel everything is going good, but at the same time, you are on the alert of negative things that are bound to happen. This perception can itself arouse suspicion with the partner’s whereabouts, mistrust and even jealousy by comparing yourself with your spouse’s friends.

We are aware that depression and anxiety have a toll on our minds as well as emotional functioning, such that it affects our reasoning and judgments on what is real and what is perceived. At this time, we are more likely to rush up with paranoid thoughts and feelings, where our imagination runs wild and creates creative, vivid imaginations, which cause the envisioned scenarios to feel real. Often such thoughts are related to events and relationship in a person’s life, thereby increasing isolation and difficulty with getting help.

Having a history of schizophreniadelusional disorder, early childhood trauma, also result in paranoid thoughts and feelings such that the individual behaves in a hostile or stubborn manner, excessively uses sarcasm, elicits hostile responses from others. These reactions tend to confirm their manifested suspicions and result in the same consequences to which they were afraid would occur.

Various other reasons such as looking for perfectionfear of loss, assuming what the other is thinking or seeking of constant reassurance of their well being, being possessive about the partner, easily jealous, being overprotective, or even having repressed, denied and projected feelings also result in paranoid thoughts and feelings, that can have a drastic impact on the relationship.

When a person is unable to deal with such negative and paranoid thoughts then there is a need to approach professional psychologist or counsellor. A psychologist will help a person to understand the reason behind it and also how to overcome such thoughts. In extreme cases, a person may require medication and for that person need to go to a psychiatrist too.

Psychiatric Disorder - 5 Silent Signs Of It!

Dr. (Major) Sriniwas Gupta 89% (637 ratings)
MD- Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Aurangabad
Psychiatric Disorder - 5 Silent Signs Of It!

Psychiatric disorders like bipolar disorder or schizophrenia do not appear all of a sudden. There are small changes that happen to an individual over a long period of time until the disease fully develops. These signs and symptoms might be too subtle in the early stage for other people to notice until they become obvious. But an early detection of any irregularity proves to be more beneficial for the patient in the long run.

It is important to know the telltale symptoms of mental disorder to distinguish between what is regular and what is not.

1. Withdrawal

Everyone needs some quiet time to cool off and relax but if a person continuously withdraws him/herself from social occasions and avoids meeting or speaking to friends, it could be a sign that something is wrong. Losing interest in life, work and people are symptoms of depression and psychotic disorder.

2. Thinking problems

Having trouble concentrating, remembering, understanding and explaining oneself in a coherent manner are some common signs of mental disorder.

3. Anxiety

Excessive stress and anxious behavior for a prolonged period are not normal. Frequent heart palpitations, headache, shortness of breath, racing mind and restlessness are cries of help that need to be heard.

4. Emotional outbursts

Sudden dramatic outbursts for no apparent reason, frequent mood swings and feeling distressed are potent signs of mental illnesses. These kinds of behavior are seen as part of a person's nature and so they are often unnoticed.

5. Changes in appetite and sleeping patterns

Oversleeping may be a sign of depression and insomnia could be a sign of anxiety. Changes in appetite and not caring about oneself or the world are indicators of a mental problem.

2445 people found this helpful

Stress - It's Consequence And Management!

MD - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Jaipur
Stress - It's Consequence And Management!

 

Stress defined as "an internal state which can be caused by physical, social and environmental situations which are an appraisal by the body as potentially harmful and threatening. Here physical, social and environment situations are known as stressors. 

Till 1930, stress was primarily used in the context of engineers and defined merely as a strain on a material object. There is still a  confusion between stress as a "cause" versus "trigger" or stress as a trigger or a response. It has seen that same stressor produce different reactions in the different individual.  This response depends on the coping behaviour of the individual which include defensive behaviour, information seeking behaviour, affiliative behaviour and problem-solving behaviour. The genetic and environmental factor also plays a vital role in determining the stress responses.

Other factors determining the effect of stressor are

1. Nature of stressor: acute or chronic one

2. The frequency of stressor: exposed to a single occasion or multiple times

Body response to the stress

Many systems, including neurotransmitters, (noradrenaline, dopamine and serotonin), hormones (CRH, ACTH,  Cortisol),  and the immune system involved in the manifestation of the stress response of the body. The overall impact of all these systems can be summarised as follows: 

1.  All these effects lead to the development of stress-related disorders, including major depression.

2. They decrease the cellular and innate immunity.

3. They increase the risk of cardiovascular disease like coronary artery disease, myocardial infarction, congestive heart failure.

4. Increases the risk of infections secondary to decrease in immunity.

5. Other illnesses which are influenced by the stress are Atopic dermatitis, Rheumatoid Arthritis, and many Cancer prognoses.

Stress and psychiatric illness

Schizophrenia and other psychotic illness

Stress plays a significant role in the course of schizophrenia. The person with schizophrenia who resides with families with high expressed emotion has doubled relapse rate in comparison with family having low expressed emotions.  Here expressed emotion refers to the attitude of the family member towards the person who has a mental disorder. 

Depression

Stress and depression have a complicated interaction. There is a complex interaction between stress, environment factor and gene which determine the outcome. 

Anxiety Disorder 

Childhood adverse event like abuse, Interpersonal conflicts or serious illness in a close relative may trigger the onset of Panic Disorder and other Anxiety Disorder.

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and Acute Stress Disorder (ASD)

PTSD develops after either experiencing or witnessing a life-threatening event or life-altering event.  Its symptoms are flashback, nightmares and severe anxiety and intrusing thought about the event-mostly uncontrollable one.

 

Schizophrenia - Things You Should Know About It!

MD - Psychiatry, MBBS
Psychiatrist, Kolkata
Schizophrenia -  Things You Should Know About It!

Schizophrenia is a disease of the mind that is usually degenerative in nature. The complex disorder is generally characterized by symptoms, such as delusions, hallucinations (both auditory and visual) and disturbances in speech and is usually chronic in nature. The symptoms are not regular and can appear at any point of time. So it is highly possible that a person suffering from schizophrenia may sometimes bear resemblance to any other normal person and all of a sudden, might exhibit symptoms typical of Schizophrenia.



The causes of Schizophrenia include:

  1. Brain Dysfunction: Abnormalities in the cerebral cortex (the cerebrum’s outer covering that is vital in regulating consciousness) of the brain is the most common cause of this disorder. This is due to the presence of abnormally enlarged ventricles in that region. The decreased brain size owing to the enlarged ventricles is often related to the hallucinations and delusions experienced by schizophrenics.
  2. Genetic Factors: Studies have also stated ‘genetics’ to be an important cause behind this disorder. Closer the family ties, higher the risks of transmitting the disorder.
  3. Biochemical Factors: More than one neurotransmitter is being targeted by recent drugs to control schizophrenia.


Symptoms which most people do not experience normally, but are found in people diagnosed with schizophrenia are said to be positive symptoms. They are:

  1. Hallucinations: These are sensory experiences of things that do not exist outside the mind. Hallucinations usually manifest in the form of auditory or visual images.
  2. Delusions: Delusions on the other hand are false beliefs one has about oneself. Delusions are of 3 major types:
    • Grandeur: Wherein the person imagines himself to be a famous personality
    • Persecution: The belief that somebody somewhere is plotting against you and the whole world is going to get you.
    • Control: The belief that a larger force, let’s say a witch, a demon or even a duck for that matter is controlling your actions.

These positive symptoms generally respond well to medications.
In addition to this, schizophrenics think and speak differently than the rest of the society. They jump from idea to idea, lose track of speech mid-way and often speak in fragmented and haphazardly joined sentences. They are, in fact, unable to fix their attention on anything in particular.
Examples of the most common negative symptoms include:

  1. The flat effect: The individual basically shows no facial expression and always has a flat emotionless mask on while staring into space. At times, they have inappropriate reactions to situations. Example - they might laugh at somebody's death and cry ad get angry when something good happens. 
  2. Avolition: This condition occurs when the individual just sit for hours doing nothing as well as behaves in a way lacking any motivation or enthusiasm.
4037 people found this helpful

Can Genetics Be The Reason Behind Schizophrenia?

Dr. Syed Saquib 91% (121 ratings)
M.B.B.S, D.P.M, M.A (Clinical Psychology)
Psychiatrist, Nagpur
Can Genetics Be The Reason Behind Schizophrenia?

Schizophrenia is a psychiatric disorder in which a person’s mood, knowledge, thought and several other characteristics gets disturbed. We can notice most of the adults and old people with few symptoms of schizophrenia, which are most commonly left unidentified. The exact cause of schizophrenia is not yet known. The person feels that they are being constantly watched, they feel the presence of someone or something, which is not actually there. They are always suspicious and think that other people are gossiping and thinking about them.

Possible causes of Schizophrenia
Though the exact cause of schizophrenia is not known there are few factors, which contribute to the cause of schizophrenia.

  1. Genetic factors: People with a family history of schizophrenia are at higher risk of getting schizophrenia.
  2. Environmental factors: Environmental factors include excessive stress during pregnancy or later stages of life. Several other factors during pregnancy and childhood are responsible for causing schizophrenia. These factors are:

    1. Decreased oxygen level during delivery due to premature birth or prolonged labour
    2. Parental loss or separation in early stages of life
    3. Parental exposure to virus or during infancy
    4. Childhood physical or sexual abuse
    5. Abnormal brain structures and brain chemistry

Sings and symptoms of schizophrenia

  1. Hallucination: To see, feel or hear anything that really does not exist is known as hallucination.
  2. Delusion: A thought or belief of a person, which is either false or impossible in reality is known as delusion.
  3. Thought and speech disturbances: The thought process and speech of a schizophrenic will be disorganized, due to which he or she  will fumble or is distracted as they are unable to align their thoughts.
  4. Difficulty in concentrating: It is difficult for people suffering from schizophrenia to concentrate on the task at hand.
  5. Erratic behaviour: People suffering from schizophrenia tend to behave erratically, either they will be too jumpy or will be perfectly still for hours at a stretch. Most people belief that those who are suffering from schizophrenia are often violent in nature, which actually is not the case.

Treatment for schizophrenia
Schizophrenia can be treated, if identified at an early stage. It is best advised to consult a psychiatrist the moment you spot the symptoms. Anti psychotic drugs, self help behaviour change, counselling and rehabilitation are few treatment modalities available for schizophrenia.

2677 people found this helpful

3 Causes Of Schizophrenia And Its Treatment!

DNB - Psychiatry
Psychiatrist, Lucknow
3 Causes Of Schizophrenia And Its Treatment!

Schizophrenia is a debilitating mental and emotional condition that is characterised by a heavily distorted thought process as well as hallucinations and even extreme fear that borders on paranoia. Let us find out more about this debilitating disease:

Causes:

  1. Genetics: Genetic factors play an important role in the development of schizophrenia.
  2. Environment: Possible environmental factors include obstetric complications, the mother's exposure to influenza during pregnancy or starvation. It has also been suggested that stress, trauma even migration can lead to the emergence of schizophrenia. 
  3. Neurodevelopmental Factors: Schizophrenia appears to be a neurodevelopmental disorder. That is changes that cause the illness have been occurring from the earliest stages of development even in utero, and may continue to influence the development of the brain over the first 25 years of life. 

Symptoms

This disease has a variety of symptoms include cognitive and emotional ones that can vary in the degree and severity. One of the most common symptoms included hallucinations and delusions where the patient may end up imagining things that do not really exist. The patient may also be gripped by sudden and crippling fear like paranoia, which can be debilitating as far as everyday functioning of the person goes. The symptoms can also interfere with the way a person deals with situations and life skills on a cognitive basis. Withdrawal and hopelessness are also a part of this disease.

Treatment
The earliest signs and symptoms must be referred to a psychiatrist. The treatment involves the management of the case of an individual basis along with psychological rehabilitation programs and inclusion of the patient in self-help groups. Housing and employment programs must also be availed so as to keep the patient busy. Also, behaviour therapy will be required in such cases. The mode of counselling should usually be on a one on one basis, although many doctors also suggest that group therapy can help in showing examples of progress so as to encourage the patient to change and get a new lease of life.

2532 people found this helpful
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