Schizophrenia is often confused with multiple personality disorder. The difference is that with multiple personality disorder the personalities manifest themselves inside a person while with schizophrenia hallucinations and delusions manifest themselves outside the person and only make themselves known to the person suffering from the disease. Often a person suffering from schizophrenia not only does not know that they have the disease; they believe that they are the only person who knows what is actually going on. The symptoms of schizophrenia involve several factors that are symptoms of other diseases as well, which makes schizophrenia a hard disease to diagnose.
The biggest of the symptoms of schizophrenia is an unmistakeable disruption in the cognitive functioning of a person's brain and their emotions. A schizophrenic will have trouble with their speech, their thoughts, their perceptions, their sense of self and their sense of the affect their actions have on others. Often there are also hallucinations. These hallucinations are also referred to as "psychotic manifestations."
Psychotic manifestations can take many forms. Often a person suffering from symptoms of schizophrenia will hear voices. Sometime they will have sensations that do not connect themselves with an obvious origination point. These can be voices, or physical sensations. Sometimes they experience profound hallucinations involving communications coming from things that would not normally communicate (one stereotype is the person whose toaster suddenly starts talking to them). Another symptom of schizophrenia involves the attachment of profound meaning to situations and events that nobody else will experience. A schizophrenic will often decide that an otherwise unremarkable event has deep significance and can become frustrated when nobody else seems to understand their attachment to the event.
The symptoms of schizophrenia are usually separated into negative and positive systems depending on how they are diagnosed and the treatment that is prescribed.
Positive symptoms of schizophrenia are symptoms that happen excessively. The DSM-IV maintains that at least two or more of the positive symptoms of schizophrenia must be consistent for at least one month unless the symptoms are extreme and a single symptom can make a case for the diagnosis of the disease. Negative symptoms of schizophrenia are symptoms that manifest themselves in the diminishing of normal personal functions. Negative symptoms can be hard to diagnose because they are not as obvious as the positive symptoms and are often associated with other illnesses as well.
Diagnosing Schizophrenia is often a difficult process and the treatment of the disease can involve a variety of treatments from anti-psychotic drugs to psychotherapy and vocational rehabilitation. Once the symptoms of schizophrenia have led to the disease's diagnosis, the schizophrenic often finds it hard to return to the life he or she used to lead. Often they will require help from family and friends to stay on their medication and keep their therapy appointments. Sometimes the symptoms of schizophrenia are so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. If someone you know is showing symptoms of schizophrenia have them seek treatment immediate
Signs of Schizophrenia Tip #1
Schizophrenia is not the same thing as having multiple personality disorder. In multiple personality disorder a person has a number of independent identities that all share one host body. Typically one of the personalities is dominant and the others exist under the surface. With Schizophrenia, there could be independent personalities but the person suffering from the disease believes that these identities exist outside of him or herself.
Signs of Schizophrenia Tip #2
There are different types of schizophrenia. The most widely known is that of paranoid schizophrenia in which the schizophrenic believes that there are people who are out to "get" him (or her). Commonly the patient associates himself with an elite group and believes that it is his membership with that group that has made him a target of others.
Signs of Schizophrenia Tip #3
Schizophrenia is normally treated with anti-psychotic drugs. There are new drugs being developed all the time. Other treatments include Electro Convulsive Therapy in which the patient is driven to convulsions by receiving a series of shocks to the brain. This treatment is thought to fix the electrochemical balance of the brain.