Schizophrenia – A Common Mental Disorder

What is Schizophrenia? It is nothing but a type of mental disorder in which the person’s thinking process is found to be scattered or disorganized. The person when affected with this problem moves away from the world of reality.

This generally affects people at the age of early adolescence or early adulthood. But there is no proof stating that the disease does not occur in other age groups. So it is not false to say that it can occur at any age of life.

Schizophrenia is also termed as a type of psychosis where the thinking process is widely disturbed. These patients have delusions, hallucinations and illusions. This means that the person sees and hears things which are actually not present. He assumes that someone is around him, talking with him and he also feels that someone is controlling him from outside. So he keeps himself separate from other people.

These all types of feelings make him terrific towards others. They get uncontrollable anger where they can even violently attack the people around him. They are always in a fear that someone is going to punish him for something, hang him or do something to him.

Some patients behave as a child at these times. These intense feelings make them stay alone, not do any physical activities which make their muscles rigid and spastic. The problem thus makes the sufferer away from the society.

Classification and getting the help

Schizophrenia is classified into 5 types based upon the symptoms of the patients. They are:

  • Paranoid
  • Catatonic
  • Disorganized
  • Residual
  • Undifferentiated

These are categorized based on the observation that a patient of schizophrenia gets a particular group of symptoms and not the other. A paranoid patient has only hallucinations and delusions. A catatonic patient has difficulty in locomotion and repeats or mimics what others do. These patients do not seem to have much delusion or hallucinations. A disorganized patient shows the symptom of disorganized speech and behavior.

Residual type of schizophrenia does not show any symptom of a usual schizophrenic patient like delusions or illusions but have symptoms of isolation and withdrawing from the social world. A patient who has undifferentiated type cannot be differentiated into any of the above mentioned categories yet have all the symptoms.

In conclusion, schizophrenia is a common mental disorder which has no permanent cure mainly when genes are involved. Whereas when this is due to stress and other social problems, behavioral therapy may show differences in some patients. There are many forms of behavioral therapies that can help. These include family therapy, community treatment, cognitive remediation and cognitive behavioral therapy.