We are brining awareness to schizophrenia for the entire month of November.
What is schizophrenia?
Schizophrenia is a long-term mental disorder involving a breakdown in the relation between thought, emotion, and behavior, leading to faulty perception, inappropriate actions and feelings, withdrawal from reality and personal relationships into fantasy and delusion, and a sense of mental fragmentation.
Who suffers from schizophrenia?
It effects men and women equally, as well as in similar rates across ethnic groups. Symptoms usually start between ages 16 and 30 and rarely occur in children. Approximately 26 million people globally live with schizophrenia.
Here is a list of some facts and myths about the disorder, that you may or may not know, from NEOMED:
Myth: Schizophrenia is hopeless; people who have it never recover.
Fact: While there is no cure for schizophrenia, there are effective treatments. Medications, recovery-oriented psychosocial treatments and rehabilitation practices are increasingly helping people with schizophrenia to lead productive, successful, and independent lives.
Myth: Hallucinations (seeing, hearing or experiencing things that others do not) and paranoia are the only symptoms of schizophrenia.
Fact: Schizophrenia is a brain-based disease, so in addition to hallucinations, it affects multiple brain functions such as the ability to think clearly, manage emotions, make decisions, and relate to others. People with schizophrenia also have delusions, which are firmly held false beliefs, that may cause them to think people are following them or looking at them.
Myth: People with schizophrenia are dangerous.
Fact: Studies indicate that they are no more dangerous than the rest of the population. People with schizophrenia tend to like being alone and withdrawn and are more likely to be victims of violence than perpetrators.
Myth: Everyone who has schizophrenia knows that they have an illness.
Fact: Many people who have schizophrenia wait months, sometimes years, and needlessly suffer before a proper diagnosis is made and treatment begins. Sometimes this is because they are unaware of what is wrong.
Myth: People with schizophrenia have split or multiple personalities.
Fact: Schizophrenia is not a split personality disorder. The myth of people with schizophrenia may have come about because the word schizophrenia comes from the Greek word that means “split mind.” The split is referring to a split from reality– not a split or multiple personality.
Myth: People get schizophrenia because they had bad parenting as children or because they have weak characters or personalities.
Fact: Schizophrenia is a complex disorder. It is not the result of anyone’s weakness or character flaws.
Myth: People with schizophrenia have to take a lot of medication in order to get better.
Fact: Research supports that when people with schizophrenia are treated with a combination of anti-psychotic medications and psychosocial therapies, they can and do get better. Psychosocial therapies involve work/school, family and relationships, and personal goals.
Three out of every 100 people will experience a psychotic episode at some time in their life.
26 Million people globally live with schizophrenia.
50% of people with schizophrenia cannot access adequate treatment.
If you know of someone who is experiencing symptoms of schizophrenia, help them get help.
One way to do that is through the Baylor Counseling Center.