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Schizophrenia Tips

5 Silent Signs Of A Psychiatric Disorder

5 Silent Signs Of A Psychiatric Disorder

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.

  • 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.

  • Thinking problems

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

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.

  • 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.

  • 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.

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Schizophrenia - How To Identify It?

Schizophrenia - How To Identify It?

When you hear the word “schizophrenia”, the first thing that comes to mind are those serial killers shown on the TV or you call it split personality. But that is not the true meaning of it. It is not a split personality or some kind of violent illness. Schizophrenia is a severe chronic mental illness which makes it difficult to differentiate between what is real and what is false.

As this is a mental illness, you will not be able to see any changes physically. You need to understand the symptoms of schizophrenia in order to know if a person is suffering from this problem. There are different kinds of symptoms that are used for diagnosing schizophrenia, but they all differ from person to person. Also, the symptoms that you see now, may not be seen later as the disease progresses. There are different types of schizophrenia and each has different symptoms.

Here is a list of the different types of schizophrenia and the most predominant and significant symptoms of each type.

  1. Paranoid Schizophrenia: People suffering from paranoid schizophrenia are characterized by strong auditory hallucinations and of being persecuted. However, they are very normal and function normally. But they are not ready to discuss their feelings openly and the symptoms are not observable. Other symptoms include anger, hostility and disorganized speech.
  2. Disorganized Schizophrenia: As the name suggests, people with disorganized schizophrenia exhibit disorganized thoughts. Delusions and hallucination may not be seen in this type of schizophrenia. The behavior of the affected person is quite disorganized or it is difficult to understand what they are saying. In fact, some emotions exhibited by the affected person are hard to understand or they are not at all relevant to the current situation. Their daily routine and activities will also be affected.
  3. Catatonic Schizophrenia: People with catatonic schizophrenia are characterized by increased or decreased movement. This symptom actually varies from person to person. Some people stay at a place for a long time without any kind of movement and some people keep moving for hours and do not stop. They do not speak for hours and sometimes they keep repeating the same thing over and over again. This has to be treated immediately as they will not be able to manage even their daily routine with this kind of behavior.
  4. Undifferentiated Schizophrenia: Undifferentiated schizophrenia is a condition where the symptoms do not fall into any of the above three types. You will also be able to observe hallucinations, delusions, anger, disorganized speech or catatonic behavior.
  5. Residual Schizophrenia: As the name suggests, it is the residue of schizophrenia behavior, but it is less severe as compared to the past. Delusions, hallucination and disorganized speech may still be present but compared to the past, the patient would be doing better.

Mental Health - Why Is It Vital?

Mental Health - Why Is It Vital?

For a fully functional and productive life, a person requires a healthy body and a healthy mind. Mental health issues could range from depression, bipolar disorder, anxiety disorder, dementia, obsessive-compulsive disorder, schizophrenia, autism and other causes. Hence, it is important that a person pays attention to these mental health disorders to avoid further problems in their lives, as well as the lives of the people around them.

Here are a few reasons as to why a person should not avoid or ignore their mental health problems:

  1. Better Physical Health: There is a solid association between the brain and the body. In case you are in physical pain, your work and family life might be influenced or you will be unable to do the activities you might like. This can prompt anxiety, nervousness and depression. People with physical health issues are three times more prone to look for mental health care than those without physical conditions as physical health problems can prompt mental distress and mental health issues can impair your physical health.
  2. Enhanced Productivity and Financial Stability: Stressful situations may trigger reactions that can make a person unproductive and lead to financial problems as well. Some people end up abandoning their homes, going bankrupt or homeless after trying to manage some sort of mental illness.
  3. Less Strain on the Family: Mental sickness or disorders influence families as well. The children of individuals with mental health issues are at more serious danger for misuse, disregard and an extensive variety of emotional and behavioural issues. Since they cannot look up to their parents for help and they frequently isolate themselves from their friends and most of them do not get the required social backing. Much of the time, the impact extends into adulthood, driving children to look for psychological or mental treatment of their own.
  4. Evasion of Crime and Victimization: A few studies recommend that individuals with untreated mental health, particularly in combination with other risk factors, might be at risk of carrying out criminal activities, violence or most probably becoming victims themselves. The danger increases gradually when the individual uses medications or alcohol or has acute symptoms. It could also happen if they are not aware of their mental state or have poor adherence to medication. Usually, acts of violence happen against relatives or somebody in the individual's nearby group of friends or in close proximity to them.
  5. A Longer, Happier Life: Individuals with even a mild mental health issue may have a lower life expectancy and a short life span. Those with the largest amounts of depression or nervousness had the danger of death that increased an incredible ninety-four percent, mostly identified with heart diseases.
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Psychiatric Disorder - How To Track It?

Psychiatric Disorder - How To Track 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 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.

- Social 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.

- Thinking problems

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

- Anxiety

Excessive stress and anxious behaviour 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.

- Emotional outbursts

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

- Changes in appetite and sleeping patterns

Oversleeping and insomnia, both, are the signs of anxiety. Changes in appetite and not caring about oneself or the world are indicators of a mental problem.

4464 people found this helpful

Autism & Schizophrenia - How Distinct Is It?

Autism & Schizophrenia - How Distinct Is It?

Both schizophrenia and autism are considered to be neurological disorders resulting from atypical neural development, occurring due to a variety of causes. Both these disorders have a genetic predisposition that may be due to environmental factors. However, there are a few basic differences between the two disease conditions.

Autism is also known as Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD), is a neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by a spectrum of abnormal behaviour. They include persistent deficits in social communication and interaction, along with restricted and repetitive patterns of behaviour, interests or activities.

Signs of autism in babies

  1. By 6 months - No social smiles or other warm, joyful expressions; limited to no eye contact
  2. By 9 months - No sharing of vocal sounds
  3. By 12 months - No babbling or use of gestures to communicate; not responding to one’s name when called
  4. By 16 months - No use of words
  5. By 24 months - No meaningful or two-word phrases

Signs of autism at any age

  1. Avoids eye contact and wants to be alone
  2. Finds it difficult to understand other people’s feelings
  3. Speaks very less or has delayed language development
  4. Echolalia - Repeats words or phrases
  5. Cannot accept change in routine or surroundings
  6. Performs repetitive behaviours like flapping or rocking
  7. Has restricted interests and hobbies
  8. Reacts unusually intense to sounds, smells, tastes, lights, colours etc.

Schizophrenia
Schizophrenia is a neuropsychiatric disorder that begins during late adolescence and early adulthood. It is characterized by delusions, hallucinations, disorganized speech and behavioural changes that cause social and occupational dysfunctions.

Signs of Schizophrenia

  1. The symptoms of schizophrenia are usually observed between ages 16 and 30, such as e.g. delusions, hallucinations, thought disorders, movement disorders etc.
  2. Delusions are false beliefs of the patient that may take many forms like delusions of persecution or grandeur. You may feel somebody is controlling you or may think you have extraordinary powers and abilities.
  3. Hallucinations are when the patient hears voices more than seeing, feeling, tasting or smelling random things, which are not actually there.
  4. Thought disorders are when the person jumps from one subject to another for no logical reason.
  5. Some negative symptoms i.e. these are symptoms which are normally present in a healthy individual, but are absent in a schizophrenic patient. E.g. absence of facial expressions, lack of motivation etc.
  6. Cognitive symptoms affect the individual’s thought process. They can be positive or negative based on their expression. E.g. poor ‘executive functioning’ which deals with the ability to understand information and make decisions using them, finding it difficult to focus etc.
  7. Although both Autsim spectrum disorder and schizophrenia are interlinked in their causes and neurological background, the symptoms for each disorder are different.

Consult your physician if you happen to observe any of these symptoms in your loved ones.

 

Schizophrenia - How Do Biochemical Factors Lead To It?

Schizophrenia - How Do Biochemical Factors Lead To 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.
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Schizophrenia - Can Genetics Cause It?

Schizophrenia - Can Genetics Cause It?

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

Signs 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.

5641 people found this helpful

Psychiatric Disorder - How To Identify It?

Psychiatric Disorder - How To Identify 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 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 suggested by an experienced psychiatrist.

- 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.

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

- 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.

- 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.

- 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.

Schizophrenia - Know The Types, Causes & Treatment Of It!

Schizophrenia - Know The Types, Causes & Treatment Of It!

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.

4346 people found this helpful

Schizophrenia - Signs And Symptoms Of It!

Schizophrenia - Signs And Symptoms Of It!

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
  3. It is because of imbalance of neurotransmitters in the brain.

Singns 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. People with schizophrenia can lead a normal life.

2827 people found this helpful
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