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4 Types of Schizophrenia Treatments
Schizophrenia treatment improves the life of a person that lives with the illness. Some treatments remove the symptoms of schizophrenia, while others mitigate and manage the condition. Schizophrenia is a chronic condition, which makes its treatment a lifelong process whose purpose is to manage the illness and help the patient to live a relatively normal life.
There is no generic method to treat Schizophrenia. Treatment has to be tailor-made to meet a patient’s unique needs. Patients with a mild form of the disease may only require mild medication. Such patients often live fairly full lives with the help of therapeutic treatments and a strong support system. Patients with severe schizophrenia need powerful medication and in extreme cases, they may need to be hospitalized.
Understanding the need for schizophrenia treatments
The exact cause of schizophrenia remains unknown. What is known is that people with a family history of schizophrenia are more likely to develop the illness. Scientists study cases where environmental factors like injury, psychological trauma and infection have triggered the illness. Scientists also theorize that some people with schizophrenia have physiological problems like a chemical imbalance or malformed pathways in the brain. Patients that suffer from schizophrenia show one or more of the following symptoms:
- Visual or auditory hallucinations
- Strange behavior
- Indifference to things that would normally elicit a strong reaction
- Social withdrawal
- Lack of sleep and concentration
- Personality change and lax hygiene
- Disorganized thoughts and speech
- A bad reaction to certain people
Schizophrenia treatments seek to eliminate or reduce these symptoms with a combination of medication and behavioral therapies.
Treatments for schizophrenia
Here are some popular treatments for schizophrenia patients:
1. One-on-one therapy sessions
This treatment requires the patient to attend individual psychotherapy sessions. During the sessions, a psychotherapist shows the patient how to tell the difference between what is real and what is not. The therapist also helps the patient to see how the illness affects their mood and behavior. The person also learns how to navigate life by controlling their thoughts and behavior.
2. Cognitive therapy
This treatment helps a patient to function better by improving their cognitive abilities. The goal of this type of therapy is to improve the person’s concentration, memory and thought processes. Cognitive therapy also helps the patient to recognize their triggers and interpret emotional and social cues.
3. Psychosocial therapy
This type of therapy gives the patient the tools they need to function in society. The patient is taught problem-solving skills, how to react to challenging situations and social skills. The person is also given the emotional and material tools they need to work, study or volunteer. An important part of psychosocial therapy is geared towards a patient’s loved ones, who are encouraged to join support groups. These groups help the patient’s loved ones get the tools and emotional support they need to live with and help the patient.
A person who has schizophrenia will sometimes experience psychotic episodes or breaks. If an episode is fairly mild, the patient may receive outpatient treatment that includes the adjustment of their antipsychotic medication. If the psychotic break is severe, the patient will be hospitalized, especially if they become violent towards themselves or other people. During their hospital stay, the patient’s medication will be adjusted until the psychotic episodes subside. The patient will also attend individual and group therapy sessions while in the hospital.
Schizophrenia can be managed
With time and perseverance, a doctor will come up with a treatment plan that will allow their patient to lead a full, meaningful life. If you or one of your loved ones need help with schizophrenia, contact us today to start receiving the care you need for a happy life.
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