In the United States, approximately 3.5 million people are diagnosed with schizophrenia. Despite the fact that the first description of this disorder was used more than 130 years ago, there is still so much that we don’t know about it. Is the cause genetic? Environmental? Situational, resulting from a traumatic event?
What we do know is that schizophrenia is treatable and that about 75% of patients who are treated recover. 25% of those treated recover completely, and 50% improve over a 10-year period. If you or a loved one are struggling with schizophrenia, understanding the disorder is vital. So what is schizophrenia?
Schizophrenia is a long-term mental disorder that involves a breakdown of the correlation between thought, emotion, and behavior. This altered reality can result in symptoms such as:
- Rambling speech
- Skewed perception of reality
- Bizarre behavior
- Confused memories
It is not uncommon for substance abuse and other neurological and mental health issues to present as co-occurring disorders.
What Is Schizophrenia Treatment?
For the greatest success, treatment for schizophrenia should be intensive and begin as soon as possible after diagnosis. The first crucial step is to control the symptoms. This is usually done using a variety of medications. It’s a process of finding the correct combination and dosage of pharmaceuticals.
Once a patient has stabilized their behaviors and thought patterns, it is time to continue with the ongoing treatment. Some common and successful practices include:
Help for Your Loved One & Education for the Family
Patients who have a strong support circle usually achieve the greatest degree of recovery through treatment. At Summit Malibu, we are committed to making the patient’s core group a part of the treatment process and providing resources we hope will answer some of your questions.