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info needed on Schizophrenia

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posted on May, 12 2005 @ 12:07 PM
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Originally posted by Faeryland
The only thing I know about Schizophrenia is that if someone has it, and they don't take their medicine.....they do wacky things and can be dangerous to themselves or others. So, they need to take their medicine.



ah,
i kinda stopped taking them cause i cope better without them




posted on May, 12 2005 @ 12:36 PM
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Have you told your doc or family that you have stopped taking them?


Infinite, you are not a psychiatrist or psychologist. Almost everyone who takes psych medication starts saying that they are better off without them, and try to rationalize it in their heads. Do not stop taking your medication. Restart it, and let your doc know for how long you stopped.

I don't know about your medication, but I do know that some types can only be given for a short (relatively) period of time, and in specific dosages that change according to a schedule, in order to be effective. A lot of them aren't medications that you are supposed to take for very long. IOW, they have to be taken as the doc instructs you.

Its imperative that you start talking your medication again, in whatever dosage and whatever way you have been instructed to take it, and let the doc know so that, if he has to, he can adjust things accordingly.

You are not a psychiatrist, you go to one because they have experience with these things, and they can help people. You need to get back on your medication. I urge you to do so. That friend of mine who had a schizophrenic break, he had to stay on it, even tho it practically made him worse in some ways, and now, he's either off it completely, or on some other medication at extremely low dosages, such that you can't even tell that he's medicated. If he had stopped, and it went on for a while, it would've mucked up the schedule, and the doc might've not been able to continue with that medication, the first choice medication, and have to use another. Get back on your medication.



posted on May, 12 2005 @ 03:43 PM
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Originally posted by infinite
ah,
i kinda stopped taking them cause i cope better without them


infinite, I know you're just going to see a bunch of paragraphs in this post, but please read it. As a favour to me?

You and I are 33/33/33's. 33 percent of us get better (This statistic is WITH medication), 33 percent of us stay the same (WITH medication), and 33 percent of us get worse (cause: ceasing treatment).

A lot of people, the lucky ones in the top 33 who get better, do so after months or years of taking the right medication, like the individual nygdan was speaking of. You might not be one of these people, infinite. It's been too short of a time to determine the pros and cons of your side-effects.

You won't be feeling it right now, but you're going to crash.When your doctors tell you that you are Schizophrenic, you WILL crash.

The reason why you are coping better is because the meds are still in your system. Everyone's brain is a sponge, it takes a long while to absorb psychotropic (anti-psychotic, anti-depressant) medications, and it takes about three months to a year to "wring" itself out.

This is because that some parts of your brain that are imbalanced are located near the core. It takes a lot of time for the meds to reach it, and even longer for them to be completely eradicated.
_________________________
Your friends and family will notice your crash coming. Please don't let it come to that. You may do or say something that will hurt your best friend forever.

Your doctor is not going to say you are cured because you are not working. I am *really* glad that you are going to school, but if you are Schizophrenic, you stand a 100% chance of relapse now. One hundred percent. It is inevitable.

Outside factors do not cure you. They might make you feel good, but that feeling is temporary.

What side-effects did you not like?
Or was it the act itself that you did not care for?

I hated staring into my medicine cup. I have to take 9 pills in the morning. Not a fun thing to look at, I know. There's ways around that, if you are interested.

The side-effects I can understand. They can seem like a nightmare at times. Cotton mouth. Weight gain. Feeling void at times. Thinking that you've become "someone else." Thinking that you're not who you used to be. Thinking that you're slower. All of those thoughts are a by-product of paranoia.

I don't know what your reason is, but could you tell me?

This is your life we are speaking of. I know I've said this a million times, but your brain controls every action in your body. It is your most vital organ... . . it can't even last ten minutes without oxygen. Do you want to play roullette with it?

Would you play roullette with your heart? Would you stop taking heart medication, if you knew that it would cause a heart attack within a year?

If you're stubborn, like most of us are, you might just see this as "Megan blah blah infinite you better blah blah blah this is bad blah schizophrenia.

But then again, something that gives me hope for you is the fact that you put your actions "on the air." Maybe you are waiting for some insight about how it will be.
______________________________
It's going to sukk, infinite, it's going to bloody sukk. If you have a nervous breakdown (which can be triggered by just about anything, without meds), your studies will go out the door.

A locked door.

Remember when I said that it is easier to get into a ward than it is to get out of one? That's times ten for people with Schizophrenia. Most of us are highly intelligent people, and doctors are reluctant to let us back into society because we can be quite cunning.

Cunning and conning. We eventually con ourselves into thinking that we can do it By Ourselves.

Please don't think that this is Megan talking about Megan. This is me telling you how it is. Why it is that people are freaking out because you've stopped.

People are freaking out because everyone but you will know that you've relapsed, and you will realize this once you've reached your bottom.

Notice that there are no IF's here. They are all WHEN'S.

At the very least, please tell your Doctor and see what he/she says. I am glad that you have told us, but the only way that we can help you is through typing and posting. Eventually you will need something a bit more sufficient than this. Please let your Doctor know. Maybe his/her answer will surprise you. . . or surprise us all.

Dot.

edited for infinite.

[edit on 12-5-2005 by dotgov101]



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 03:55 AM
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What side-effects did you not like?
Or was it the act itself that you did not care for?


the fact that i keep feeling sleepy all the time,
and i find it hard to work with them in my system. i feel better off without them anyways



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 05:24 AM
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I'm not upset, infinite, just worried. I don't want you to lose your best friend, as I did once. I drove my friend into the ground with my paranoia.

Although I am a strong advocate for medical treatment of a mental illness, I have said all that I can say. I believe that you are in your late teens/early twenties?

I can't point a finger, because I did the exact same thing ten years ago.

I can only tell you what I've told you, and that is merely my own experience.

I've urged what I've urged, and although I wish you wouldn't, I understand why you are. Maybe in time, you will reconsider, as there are meds that do not cause drowsiness.

*Thank you* for replying with your reason, at the very least. Please keep us 'posted.'

Dot.



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 01:05 PM
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Originally posted by infinite
the fact that i keep feeling sleepy all the time,
and i find it hard to work with them in my system. i feel better off without them anyways


Infinite, isn't it worth the effort to have to take them now with the good chance of getting off them and being all better in the future??? I can only begin to imagine how much of a hinderance being on the medication can be, but, you're on it for a reason, you were having problems. I'm sure you do feel better in some ways when you aren't using it. But before long, won't it all leave your system and not be working at all? Won't the paranoia start creeping up again?

Also, if you are comfortable with the decision, why not tell your doctor?? Or family? If its a logical decision, then you should be able to demonstrate that to them, or at least you doc/worker. The doctor has to be kept informed as to whats going on. When is the next time that you see him/her?



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 03:59 PM
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infinite I dont know you from Adam, but who is it that is making you feel pain.... I wonder

You are not Schizo, you are repressing something, I am not sure what it is, a person, a situation, something that apparently is in constant contact with you or your surroundings..... Like a very dull ocillating sound in your brain, constantly making you agitated, but something that you choose to ignore.

do you live in a busy city with lots of background noise ?

find a way out, you need nature, you need to be alone with the planet.

but you need to remember that you are never "on your own". You are a special person and GOD knows it. Its okay if you are not spirtual everyone has their own journey. Just remember that WE are all connected, strength comes from knowing that WE are all connected your pain is felt by many and your triumphs are exhalted by thousands.

But you need to understand your surroundings, somethings are not always positive as much as we would like them to be. You need to discover and accept these things for what they are. Maybe you need to cleanse your circle of influence, maybe it has nothing to do with people, but rather noise, maybe you have not accepted yourself as being a part of nature.

In the end you need to find a balance in your life, maybe there are too many demands placed on you by others or school or responsibilities.

YOU must find a place within you that is dedicated to giving you peace. You need to listen when there is nothing to listen to. If that means driving for 100 miles to be in the middle of nature then do it and if it means hiking for ten minutes to be alone with nature then do it. But respect that you are a creature of nature just like the worms in the ground or the birds in the trees. Let the planet communicate with you and you will find your answers.

And remember that you are in control of you, your mind is messing with you, but if you understand that you are in control then the "voices" will have no power over you.

YOU are in control
YOU are the general of your actions
YOU do not have to listen
I am ONE



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 04:47 PM
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I'm sorry, but I have to respond to this out of personal and medical integrity. I say these things not to be cruel, but to be honest and to defend those with M.I.


Originally posted by robertfenix
infinite I dont know you from Adam, but who is it that is making you feel pain.... I wonder


You wonder because you are probably not a doctor, or a schizophrenic. And, as you stated, you DON'T know him from Adam. If you are a psychic, then you will know the torment that goes through a schizophrenic's mind, correct? How about if I answer your questions, being that I am a schiz.


do you live in a busy city with lots of background noise ?
I was diagnosed in the most powerful and gossipy city in the world. Plenty of background noise to mingle with my own noise. What point does that have?


find a way out, you need nature, you need to be alone with the planet.


I packed up my bags and cats, then drove into the sunset, literally. Westward bound. I now live in the upper midwest, where rabbits, crows, raccoons, and other wildlife come feed in my front yard. Guess what? I'm still schizophrenic. There is no such thing as a geographical cure. Yes, there is less stress, but stress doesn't cause schizophrenia. It isn't even classified as a stress-induced disorder.


but you need to remember that you are never "on your own". You are a special person and GOD knows it.


I whole-heartedly agree. I am a Christian. May God bless us both.


Just remember that WE are all connected, strength comes from knowing that WE are all connected your pain is felt by many and your triumphs are exhalted by thousands.


You don't know his pain. You don't know my pain. And I don't know your pain. The pain felt by many is people the millions of people afflicted with Schizophrenia. Even then, we don't truly understand anyone, nor does anyone truly understand us.


But you need to understand your surroundings, somethings are not always positive as much as we would like them to be. You need to discover and accept these things for what they are. Maybe you need to cleanse your circle of influence, maybe it has nothing to do with people, but rather noise,


Okay, the noise part you got right. Noise can be amplified for some of us. Voices can be deafening. Lights can be blinding and smeared. This is all part of the hallucination aspect. Every hallucination is different.


maybe you have not accepted yourself as being a part of nature.
Alright, for the benefit of science, Eastern thought does have its merits as an enhancement for medical treatment. I practice yoga and deep meditation, and have more nature in my front yard on a daily basis than a county fair. I spend, on average, $5 a day to feed wildlife their correct diet.


In the end you need to find a balance in your life, maybe there are too many demands placed on you by others or school or responsibilities.
He already mentioned that he has quit working, and is continuing his studies. It is ENCOURAGED by doctors to live a semi-"normal" life. Try to work. Try to study. Just get away from the house. Do what you can do. Try hard.


You need to listen when there is nothing to listen to. If that means driving for 100 miles to be in the middle of nature then do it and if it means hiking for ten minutes to be alone with nature then do it.
Some changes in structure, routine and location can have negative affects on a person with M.I. I'm proud of the fact that he is attending school and still in his same social and familial circles.


But respect that you are a creature of nature just like the worms in the ground

or

the birds in the trees. Let the planet communicate with you and you will find your answers.

All you are doing is encouraging delusional behaviour with this statement. If he were to go in to his doctor and tell him/her that he is talking to the worms in the earth, his dosage will be upped.


..you are in control then the "voices" will have no power over you.
There is no "controlling" the quote unquote voices. You can't tell them to stop, slow down, speed up, tone it down, change the tune.

I'm sorry, man, but you're wrong. I can see it working with someone who (at most) has BPD or ADHD or Chronic Depression, but being Schizophrenic is a completely different ballpark. There are wayyyy more symptoms and less answers.

Especially environmental answers. What happens in our brains happens in our brains. Everything can be fine and dandy, and BANG....we tic. The meds control this tic. They may make us sleepy, but we don't get high on them, and they are not fun. But without them, oh...you wouldn't understand.

You just don't understand.
Dot.



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 05:32 PM
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You cant "get away" I have voices too, the nature part is to determine the seperation of where the "problem" is. The un-natural harmonic of daily life can become overwhelming to some people, ie hearing alarms of a fire truck or police car generates visions of "WHY, to Where, for Whom......" which can lead to the generation of voices....

By removing these distractions and trying to remove yourself from everyone else you can focus on YOU. And only you. There is a reason why for many thousand of years that there is a saying that say Nature is the Healer, the planet is the mother and giver of life.

It is not technology that gives life and peace it is knowing that YOU are a part of something much larger. THAT YOU are not alone.

We all share a common bond that is life energy is in all of us including the animals. I was not saying for him to go into the forest and speak with the animals. But to listen to nature, to listen to the sound of the wind and crackle of the leaves.

Even though you live in a city with trees, how do you hear the birds in the trees, from the cars on the street, or the radios, or humm of electric signs.

You can not escape forever, but you can make a break to find yourself.

I sometimes have to leave my house and just go outside and sit under the moonlight and look at the stars. The pressure of daily life and people and things can be ominous. But outside, with the air on my face, when I can hear the trees and I can hear the far off sounds in the distance then I know that at that moment I am connected to the planet. I am not in my "own world" I am not alone, I am like many others before me, thousands of years before me who also stood and looked into the stars or felt the wind or walked across the ground. They too had problems, they also struggled at times, but they endured and lived on and had children who had children who had children and we survived.

I have voices that tell me to do bad things to people who I dont even know and sometimes to people I know for absolutely no reason. Violent things, evil things. But I know that I am ONE. I can not do something that I do not want. No matter the thoughts in my head.

Our world is soaking us with abnormal energy that the body uses against us. It is up to us to understand when that happens and to realise that our brains are more then we can understand. But our corporal motions are controlled in the physical world by US. It is only when we submit that we have no control do we no longer have control and allow our motor functions to be ruled by our repressive mind.

I am glad to hear that you moved west to find solice in nature, but you understand that just being with the animals in the forest or placing yourself in that enviroment does not mean you really understand your part of nature. Its one thing to have compassion for the animals but its entirly different to look into their eyes and have an understanding that there is life within and allow your mind to be open to connecting with them.


There are many things that science does not understand about the world, even the most modern and advanced technology is outdone by nature.

Sharks have amazing "electrical radar, phermone sensitivty and spatial vision" that even the most modern equipment can not duplicate, yet the shark has no cpu's, no batteries, superconducting wires.

or the flea who has super strong elastic tension bands that can propel its body more then 500 times its body size into the air.

or the flight dynamic of the bee wing. We have yet to be able to replicate the bee's motion in flight in a man made craft. Think how acrobatic a bee can bee and how fast it can fly and how far it can fly and how precise it can fly, how about how quickly it can transistion from flying fast to hovering or diving or landing.

tell me the system that the prickly pear cactus use's to fire its needle into a leg passing by or into a animals that wants to eat it, without physically being touched....

or why is it that spider web fiber is stronger then almost every man made material we have come up with ?? and only recently have we been able to make a synthetic copy of it

or that an octopus skin can change color, change shape and change texture on a whim. Sure we have thermo materials that can change color based on thempurature but nothing like an octopus

Why do we use dogs to smell for dead bodies, why dont we have a machine to do that ???


Man has created technology over time only to find out that something in nature has already done it and usually done it better. Its only a matter of finding the co-orelation. Such as bats and radar or an owl being able to see in the night or the fact that a hawk can spot the movement of small mouse from more then 1,000 feet away AND discern it from a decoy (not living yet moving one)



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 06:12 PM
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Schizonphrenia can be harder to diagnose then you would think. About 6 yrs ago I was diagnosed as 'paranoid schizophrenic', by the top psychaitrist in my home town. With in 2 yrs he revised the diagnosis to Social Anxiety Disorder. now it's Generalized Anxiety Disorder. In other words I'm not crazy, only very nervous.

So if you are diagnosed as schizophrenic, don't lose hope. It's not nessecarily the 'life sentence' that you might think. Diagnosis maybe revised as the treating physican gets more insight into the condition, or as the condition changes. (Severe stress can sometimes trigger 'psychotic' symptoms, which can clear up).



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 08:05 PM
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EXACTELY, thats why he needs to figure out what it is... because just like you said not everyone who is labeled as having schizo.. is actually.

Maybe is a hyper Tensive Stress episode, malfesting itself as a semi psychotic event.

But you won't understand the root of it, unless you can take out the other variables in the enviroment that can be causing the stress. Once away the person can reflect internally and begin to ask the questions, why do I feel this way, when does it happen, how long does it affect me until I "snap" out of it, how many times do I go back and forth from feeling okay to feeling like I am in a drug induced haze...



posted on May, 13 2005 @ 09:00 PM
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The worst part for me was the medicating. I was on about 16 mgs of RISPERIDONE a day. The max recommended doasge was about 6 or 7! My bowels clogged up, and even 6 yrs later, I still move about once or twice a week.

When I was admitted, my doctor, the top phorensic psychiatrist in our community, commited me with out any testing, such as MRI, brainscan, etc. A person manifewsting psychotic symptoms might have had a brain tumour, or a brain lesion. He even went so far as to lie to the drug board to get me on the stuff. I was on social assistence at the time, and my drugs had to be paid for be the govt. The govt wouldn't cover risperidone, since it was a fairly new med, unless it was a last resort treatment. My doctor basically said that he tried me on every other med first, even thought the paper work clearly proved that I'd only been seeing him briefly.

I had a clear case of malpractise, but by that time I was glad enough to have had my diagnosis changed, and didn't want to push my luck. If he smelled a law suit, he might have changed it back!

The thing is that doctor's aren't gods. Many are greedy careerists, who follow the profession because it's a good way to make a prosperous living. If you want an example of how people can be misdiagnosised, and mistreated, read Robert Pirsig's "Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance", and "Lila". He describes how he has to basically bluff his way out of the wards, after being hospitalized for a breakdown.



posted on May, 15 2005 @ 04:42 AM
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Originally posted by GrandCourtJester
The worst part for me was the medicating. I was on about 16 mgs of RISPERIDONE a day. The max recommended doasge was about 6 or 7! My bowels clogged up, and even 6 yrs later, I still move about once or twice a week.


Grand, I was a test subject for Risperidone in its early stages. I was a patient at an institution in Northern Virginia, and pregnant. I was told that it would be "good for me." Yet I couldn't figure out why I was getting my blood drawn three times a day.

I later learned it was because they were determining if I was "still pregnant." Ted overheard an attendant saying he wondered if I was "still pregnant," and it took three security guards to remove him during visiting hours.

We were all on it, all of us patients. They had me in a ward with individuals, some of whom were criminally insane. We were all either spitting or drooling. It caused saliva buildup. I will never know the dose, I only remember the 3x/day pregnancy tests and seeing Ted dragged off. Other than that, I remember nothing. Ted tells me that I was completely unresponsive, and that all I did was rub my belly. I guess the mother instinct can never be removed.

But our child was. Near the end of the first trimester, the Commonwealth of Virginia decided that a "termination" was needed, as the child would have been born deformed. I had no choice in the matter. Neither did Ted, as I was the property of the Commonwealth. I had signed my life away.

It was there that I learned, as you said, that Doctors are not Gods. Some of them can be Demons.

BUT...all of these events lead up to where I am today. Happy, content, sometimes I have a med error and go a little goofy, but otherwise I am able to do things that I never could have done before.

Dot.



posted on May, 15 2005 @ 04:48 AM
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are there different types of Schizophrenia?
if so how many and what are there name? ive been studying over the net for a long time now reading everything i can about Schizophrenia



posted on May, 15 2005 @ 05:24 AM
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Originally posted by infinite
are there different types of Schizophrenia?
if so how many and what are there name? ive been studying over the net for a long time now reading everything i can about Schizophrenia


Yes, there are several different types, but some people can exhibit symptoms of more than one. It can also be intermingled with BPD (Manic Depression), which is called Schizo-Affective Disorder. Schizo-Affective Disorder is my clinical diagnosis. It is very dangerous, and I thank God my team was able to beat the odds in treating it.
Your Guide To Schizophrenia - WEBMD:

Paranoid schizophrenia: People with this type are preoccupied with false beliefs (delusions) about being persecuted or being punished by someone. Their thinking, speech, and emotions, however, remain fairly normal.

Disorganized schizophrenia: People with this type often are confused and incoherent, and have jumbled speech. Their outward behavior may be emotionless or flat or inappropriate, even silly or childlike. Often they have disorganized behavior that may disrupt their ability to perform normal daily activities such as showering or preparing meals.

Catatonic schizophrenia: The most striking symptoms of this type are physical. People with catatonic schizophrenia are generally immobile and unresponsive to the world around them. They often become very rigid and stiff, and unwilling to move. Occasionally, these people have peculiar movements like grimacing or assume bizarre postures. Or, they might repeat a word or phrase just spoken by another person. People with catatonic schizophrenia are at increased risk of malnutrition, exhaustion, or self-inflicted injury.

Undifferentiated schizophrenia: This subtype is diagnosed when the person's symptoms do not clearly represent one of the other three subtypes.

What Are the Symptoms of Schizophrenia?
People with schizophrenia may have a number of symptoms involving changes in ability and personality, and they may display different kinds of behavior at different times. When the illness first appears, symptoms usually are sudden and severe.

The most common symptoms of schizophrenia can be grouped into three categories: Positive symptoms, disorganized symptoms, and negative symptoms.



Positive symptoms

In this case, the word positive does not mean "good." Rather, it refers to obvious symptoms that are not present in people without schizophrenia. These symptoms, which are sometime referred to as psychotic symptoms, include:

Delusions: Delusions are strange beliefs that are not based in reality and that the person refuses to give up, even when presented with factual information. For example, the person suffering from delusions may believe that people can hear his or her thoughts, that he or she is God or the devil, or that people are putting thoughts into his or her head.
Hallucinations: These involve perceiving sensations that aren't real, such as seeing things that aren't there, hearing voices, smelling strange odors, having a "funny" taste in your mouth and feeling sensations on your skin even though nothing is touching your body. Hearing voices is the most common hallucination in people with schizophrenia. The voices may comment on the person's behavior, insult the person or give commands.




Disorganized symptoms

Disorganized symptoms reflect the person's inability to think clearly and respond appropriately. Examples of disorganized symptoms include:

Talking in sentences that do not make sense or using nonsense words, making it difficult for the person to communicate or engage in conversation
Shifting quickly from one thought to the next
Moving slowly
Being unable to make decisions
Writing excessively but without meaning
Forgetting or losing things
Repeating movements or gestures, such as pacing or walking in circles
Having problems making sense of everyday sights, sounds and feelings




Negative symptoms

In this case, the word negative does not mean "bad," but reflects the absence of certain normal behaviors in people with schizophrenia. Negative symptoms include:

Lack of emotion and expression; or emotions, thoughts and moods that do not fit with situations or events (for example, crying instead of laughing at a joke)
Withdrawal from family, friends and social activities
Reduced energy
Lack of motivation
Loss of pleasure or interest in life
Poor hygiene and grooming habits
Problems functioning at school, work or other activities
Moodiness (being very sad or very happy, or having swings in mood)
Catatonia (a condition in which the person becomes fixed in a single position for a very long time)



What Causes Schizophrenia?

The exact cause of schizophrenia is not yet known. It is known, however, that schizophrenia -- like cancer and diabetes -- is a real illness with a biological basis. It is not the result of bad parenting or personal weakness. Researchers have uncovered a number of factors that appear to play a role in the development of schizophrenia, including:

Genetics (heredity): Schizophrenia tends to run in families, which means the likelihood to develop schizophrenia may be passed on from parents to their children.
Brain chemistry: People with schizophrenia may have an imbalance of certain chemicals in the brain. They may be either very sensitive to or produce too much of a brain chemical called dopamine. Dopamine is a neurotransmitter, a substance that helps nerve cells in the brain send messages to each other. An imbalance of dopamine affects the way the brain reacts to certain stimuli, such as sounds, smells and sights, and can lead to hallucinations and delusions.
Brain abnormality: Newer research has found abnormal brain structure and function in people with schizophrenia. However, this type of abnormality doesn't happen in all schizophrenics and can occur in people without the disease.
Environmental factors: Evidence suggests that certain environmental factors, such as a viral infection, poor social interactions or highly stressful situations, may trigger schizophrenia in people who have inherited a tendency to develop the disorder Schizophrenia more often surfaces when the body is undergoing hormonal and physical changes, such as those that occur during the teen and young adult years.


Who Gets Schizophrenia?


Anyone can get schizophrenia. It is diagnosed all over the world and in all races and cultures. While it can occur at any age, schizophrenia typically first appears in the teenage years or 20s. The disorder affects men and women equally, although symptoms generally appear earlier in men (in their teens or 20s) than in women (in their 20s or early 30s). Children over the age of 5 can develop schizophrenia, but it is very rare before adolescence.


How Common Is Schizophrenia?


Schizophrenia is a relatively common disorder. About 1% of the population, or 2.2 million Americans ages 18 and older, will develop schizophrenia.


How Is Schizophrenia Diagnosed?

If symptoms are present, the doctor will perform a complete medical history and physical examination. While there are no laboratory tests to specifically diagnose schizophrenia, the doctor may use various tests, such as X-rays and blood tests, to rule out physical illness as the cause of the symptoms.

If the doctor finds no physical reason for the symptoms, he or she may refer the person to a psychiatrist or psychologist, mental health professionals who are specially trained to diagnose and treat mental illnesses. Psychiatrists use specially designed interview and assessment tools to evaluate a person for a psychotic disorder. The therapist bases his or her diagnosis on the person's report of symptoms and his or her observation of the person's attitude and behavior. A person is considered to have schizophrenia if he or she has characteristic symptoms that last for at least six months.


How Is Schizophrenia Treated?

The goal of treatment is to reduce the symptoms of schizophrenia and to decrease the chances of a relapse, or return of symptoms. Treatment may include:

Medications: The primary medications used to treat schizophrenia are called antipsychotics. These medicines do not cure schizophrenia but help relieve the most troubling symptoms, including delusions, hallucinations and thinking problems. Older medications used include: Thorazine, Prolixin, Haldol, Navane, Stelazine, Trilafon and Mellaril. Newer medications used to treat schizophrenia include: Risperdol, Clozaril, Seroquel, Geodon and Zyprexa.

Psychosocial therapy: While medication may help relieve symptoms of schizophrenia, various psychosocial treatments can help with the behavioral, psychological, social and occupational problems associated with the illness. Through therapy, patients also can learn to control their symptoms, identify early warning signs of relapse and develop a relapse prevention plan. Psychosocial therapies include: Rehabilitation, which focuses on social skills and job training to help people with schizophrenia function in the community and live as independently as possible; Individual psychotherapy, which can help the person better understand his or her illness, and learn coping and problem-solving skills; Family therapy, which can help families deal more effectively with a loved one who has schizophrenia, enabling them to better help their loved one; Group therapy/support groups, which can provide continuing mutual support.
Hospitalization: Most people with schizophrenia may be treated as outpatients. However, people with particularly severe symptoms, or those in danger of hurting themselves or others may require hospitalization to stabilize their condition.

Electroconvlusive therapy (ECT): This is a procedure in which electrodes are attached to the person's head and a series of electric shocks are delivered to the brain. The shocks induce seizures, causing the release of neurotransmitters in the brain. This form of treatment is rarely used today in the treatment of schizophrenia. ECT may be useful when all medications fail or if severe depression or catatonia makes treating the illness difficult.

Are People With Schizophrenia Dangerous?

Popular books and movies often depict people with schizophrenia and other mental illnesses as dangerous and violent. This is not true. Most people with schizophrenia are not violent; more typically, they prefer to withdraw and be left alone.[ In some cases, however, people with mental illness who also abuse alcohol or drugs may engage in dangerous or violent behavior.

On the other hand, people with schizophrenia can be a danger to themselves. Suicide is the number one cause of premature death among people with schizophrenia. According to the World Fellowship for Schizophrenia and Allied Disorders, 1 in 10 people with schizophrenia commits suicide and 4 in 10 are known to have attempted suicide.

What Is the Outlook for People With Schizophrenia?

With proper treatment, most people with schizophrenia can lead productive and fulfilling lives. They are able to live with their families or in community settings rather than in long-term psychiatric institutions.

Ongoing research on the brain and how brain disorders develop will likely lead to more effective medicines with fewer side effects.


Can Schizophrenia Be Prevented?

There is no known way to prevent schizophrenia. However, early diagnosis and treatment can help avoid or reduce frequent relapses and hospitalizations, and help decrease the disruption to the person's life, family and friendships.

(View the full table of contents for the Mental Health Guide
Reviewed by the doctors at The Cleveland Clinic Department of Psychiatry and Psychology.
Edited by Charlotte E. Grayson, MD, WebMD, May 2004.)

I hope this helps. I outlined some key points. I hope you don't mind.
Dot.



posted on May, 15 2005 @ 09:24 AM
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Electroconvlusive therapy (ECT): This is a procedure in which electrodes are attached to the person's head and a series of electric shocks are delivered to the brain. The shocks induce seizures, causing the release of neurotransmitters in the brain. This form of treatment is rarely used today in the treatment of schizophrenia. ECT may be useful when all medications fail or if severe depression or catatonia makes treating the illness difficult.


thats scary,
i hope that doesnt happen to me cause i really dont like the thought of having that done to my body.



Paranoid schizophrenia: People with this type are preoccupied with false beliefs (delusions) about being persecuted or being punished by someone. Their thinking, speech, and emotions, however, remain fairly normal.


i think this is what i might have, the docs have notice that im extremely paranoid about my surroundings and people.



Catatonic schizophrenia: The most striking symptoms of this type are physical. People with catatonic schizophrenia are generally immobile and unresponsive to the world around them. They often become very rigid and stiff, and unwilling to move. Occasionally, these people have peculiar movements like grimacing or assume bizarre postures. Or, they might repeat a word or phrase just spoken by another person. People with catatonic schizophrenia are at increased risk of malnutrition, exhaustion, or self-inflicted injury.


i've never heard of this type before. this is new to me cause i dont remember reading about it or seeing it on the internet.

Thank you for all the information



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 12:52 PM
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Originally posted by infinite
thats [Electro shock therapy] scary,
i hope that doesnt happen to me cause i really dont like the thought of having that done to my body.

Would that not indicate that you should stay the course with your medication?? I mean, given the choice, between traditional, moderate treatment with medication (tho its 'severe' compared to 'regular' medecine) and radical invasive treatments like that, isn't the medecine better?

Have you told your doctor that you are not on your medication??



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 03:24 PM
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I do fine without medicine, and in my mind it would be better not to take medicine for schizophrenia, as you might become dependant on it, and when off it, you think yourself to be worse then you are and trick yourself into worse condtions. Then again, im screwed up in the head enough to believe my rambling.



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 05:12 PM
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ECT is not as common as it once was. It is usually used as a last resort, (i.e. criminally insane, or completely catatonic individuals)with the voltage being much lower than it was during its prime (1950's-60's).

Infinite, have you told anyone yet that you have stopped taking your meds? I am wondering if you choose to keep it secretive, from knowing that it is not the appropriate choice?

Dot



posted on May, 16 2005 @ 09:29 PM
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Originally posted by Caseysmind
Then again, im screwed up in the head enough to believe my rambling.

That shoudl be enough reason then to not listen to your advice to reject medication 'because you'd become dependant on it'. My friend who had schizophrenia was in serious dulldrums,he took his meds, it sucked for a while, and then everything got better, because he got better, because he took his medication. He went from having to leave school to reside in an asylum, to geting his business degree, getting a super job, his own apartment, in a different state, and now has a nice girlfriend too. If he hadn't taken his medication, or listened to his psych, he'd have none of that. His loosing that is why he was on teh medication in the first place.


dotgov101
from knowing that it is not the appropriate choice?

Indeed, if one was better when they weren't on it, then it should be fair to get an objective opinion on that. IOW, why hid it?



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