What Is Schizophrenia?

By boone
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Schizophrenia is a chronic psychiatric condition wherein the afflicted individual experiences a distorted version of reality. When left untreated, this condition can make it impossible for a person to fully integrate in social or professional settings. In some cases, schizophrenic episodes can cause a person to be a harm to others or him- or herself. Since there are several distinct types of schizophrenia, seeking treatment from a licensed professional is the only way to understand what form of treatment is best.

Though a very rare disorder, impacting less than 1% of people around the world, there are many misconceptions about schizophrenia. Incorrect media portrayals and underfunded studies led to many conflating the disorder with dissociative identity disorder, previously referred to as multiple personality disorder. Taking a closer look at the condition makes it much easier to identify and treat.

1. Common Symptoms of Schizophrenia

Perhaps one of the most common misconceptions surrounding schizophrenia is the idea that it is similar to or the same as split-personality disorders. Though the name itself loosely means “split mind,” the misconception is largely due to the way the symptoms of schizophrenia are categorized. Those afflicted with this disorder are likely to experience two sets of symptoms that are labeled as either “positive” or “negative.” Identifying both the positive and negative responses in a schizophrenic individual can help illuminate the specific type of the condition a person is living with as well as possible treatments.

Common positive symptoms include disorganized behaviors, hallucinations, and delusions. Negative symptoms exhibited will include extremely restricted speech and limited emotional expression. Some of these symptoms can be caused by other psychiatric conditions and visiting a professional is advised once any begin to persist.


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