Schizophrenia: The Overrated Disease That Ordinary People Know Nothing About
According to the World Health Organization, patients with schizophrenia are 2 to 2.5 times more likely to die earlier than healthy people. This is typically because of poor treatment and physical illnesses, such as infectious, metabolic and cardiovascular diseases. Over 50% of patients with schizophrenia aren’t receiving a good care, support, and treatment.
Although there is no cure for schizophrenia, this disease is treatable and patients can lead fulfilling and productive lives. Unfortunately, most of them have lack access to treatment and the disease becomes chronic and more severe. The problem is, the old-style mental hospitals often don’t provide the treatment that patients with schizophrenia need and a lack of support of family members makes them feel outcasts. It’s important to seek professionals and check out each prescription they make.
Treatments help to relieve and eliminate the symptoms of schizophrenia and they usually include:
- Psychosocial treatment, which is used after an effective medication is found. This treatment involves learning and developing the skills that help people with schizophrenia live a fulfilling life – go to school, college, university and work as well as travel and vacation. Patients who get a regular psychosocial treatment are less likely to be hospitalized or have relapses, and they are more likely to live like ordinary people.
- Antipsychotic treatment is a must-follow since it helps keep the symptoms of schizophrenia under control and reduce the risk of relapse. Antipsychotic medications help to prevent the biochemical imbalances that lead to schizophrenia, albeit you should never take them without consulting a professional. Antipsychotics can have a number of serious side effects that range from blurred vision, dry mouth, constipation, dizziness and drowsiness to pacing, muscle control, facial tics, and tremors. It may take a lot of time and experiment before you and your doctor will figure out the right medication and dose for you.
- Choosing the right antipsychotic medications. There are three types of antipsychotics: atypical antipsychotics, typical antipsychotics, and miscellaneous antipsychotic agents. Atypical antipsychotics are used to treat the negative and positive symptoms of schizophrenia and have minimal side effects. The most used atypical antipsychotics include Lurasidone, Iloperidone, Clozapine, Cariprazine, Ziprasidone, Risperidone, Quetiapine, Brexpiprazole, Asenapine, Paliperidone, Olanzapine, and Aripiprazole. Typical antipsychotics are effective in treating confusion, hallucinations, and delusions. The most used typical antipsychotics include Trifluoperazine, Perphenazine, Thiothixene, Mesoridazine, Thioridazine, Haloperidol, Fluphenazine, and Chlorpromazine. Miscellaneous antipsychotic agents are used to treat agitation in patients with schizophrenia. The most popular one is Loxapine.
Rehabilitation helps people with schizophrenia boost their confidence levels and improve the skills needed to live an independent and productive life in the society. It’s provided through a host of services, including:
- Housing programs (24-hour support and supervision);
- Case management (financial assistance, service access, and a range of other help);
- Drop-in centers (informational support, socialization, and communication);
- Crisis services (in-patient hospitalization, residential placement, after hours counseling, and 24-hour hotlines);
- Coordinated specialty care (psychosocial therapies, medication, family involvement, case management, and supported employment and education services);
- Counseling (informational help, communication and “talk” therapy);
- Self-help groups (support, communication, and informational help);
- Psychosocial rehabilitation programs (mastering a wide variety of life skills, including stress management, problem-solving, socializing, shopping, budgeting, cleaning, cooking, and career, among the others).