Mental illness

Defining Schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is a psychiatric disorder. It is characterized by convoluted thought process and the inability to provide desired responses. Its other important characteristics are delusion of verbal and visual information. People suffering from schizophrenia may not able to interpret correct meaning of piece of information provided to them. Disorganized thinking is a part of their everyday behavior.

Schizophrenia greatly affects a person’s everyday life. Such people may face difficulties in all aspects of life like academics, work, relationships etc. It can also cause one to have auditory hallucinations and produce disorganized speech. It can make a person feel helpless and make way for additional anxiety disorders. It can be a significant reason for ongoing depression and loneliness of a person. This disorder can happen to anybody in any segment of society. It may be so disruptive that it could lead a person into joblessness and poverty. This condition can impair ones mental health and reduce life expectancy.

Signs and Symptoms of Schizophrenia

  • Difficulty to cognize and comprehend information
  • Trouble in forming a clear thought process
  • Crying or laughing in between speech or at wrong times
  • Memory problems
  • Disorganized speech
  • Hallucinations
  • Trouble understanding rapid unwritten communication
  • Trouble paying attention while at work
  • Loss of concentration in studies
  • Confused state of mind
  • Lack of appropriate emotional responses and difficulty in forming relationships

Causes and Risk Factors

Schizophrenia typically develops during the late adolescence or early adulthood. It may also be a result of a severe accident or brain injury. Risk factors for developing schizophrenia include the following:

  • Childhood disturbance
  • Family history

Schizophrenia can be very severe. This disorder affects a person’s day to day activities. As it affects one’s daily functioning at work, academics and personal relationships, it can lead to other mood disorders like Dysthymia, Bipolar Type I, Bipolar Type II, Cyclothymic Disorder etc. It has risks like:

  • Depression due to disappointment and criticism
  • Many other mood and personality disorders
  • Thoughts of suicide
  • Emotional setbacks
  • Fear of humiliation


Schizophrenia is treatable with psychotherapy and medication. These can be provided by a rehabilitation center. There is a possibility of experiencing symptoms months or years post treatment. Schizophrenia is a chronic syndrome. While there are many medications on the market designed for schizophrenia, effectiveness varies so an individualized treatment plan created and adjusted by a medical professional is essential to recovery.


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