Symptoms and treatment of schizophrenia. First signs, types, tests

The topic of today's conversation is the disease of schizophrenia. We will understand what is schizophrenia, we will pay attention to the symptoms, signs, types, diagnosis and treatment of this mental illness.

Schizophrenia is a serious mental disorder that distorts a person’s thoughts, actions, expression of emotions, perception of reality, and attitude to others.

People faced with this disease have problems functioning in relationships, at work and in society. Schizophrenia is not completely treated, with the help of the correct therapy you can only take it under control.

There is an opinion that schizophrenia is a split personality and a consequence of sociopathy. It's a delusion. In schizophrenia, a person is unable to distinguish the imagination from reality. The world looks like a jumble of different sounds, images, and thoughts. The behavior of schizophrenics is extremely strange, and in some cases - shocking.This is due to a sudden change in behavioral and personal character with the loss of contact with reality. This phenomenon is usually called a psychotic episode.

Schizophrenia manifests itself differently in different people. One person has only one psychotic episode, the other during the life they appear constantly. At the same time, in between episodes, he can live a normal life.

For many years of research, experts have not been able to find out the exact reasons for the emergence of schizophrenia. This disease, like cancer or diabetes, has a biological basis (not personal weakness or poor parenting, but genetics).

Disease factors

  • Genetics. Schizophrenia is characterized by a tendency to seriality in the family. The probability of developing the disease is inherited by the younger generation.
  • Brain chemistry. A chemical substance is constantly being developed in the human brain - dopamine, which helps the nerve cells in the transmission of information. Dopamine imbalance negatively affects the brain's response to visual images, smells and sounds, resulting in delusions and hallucinations.
  • Brain disorders. The latest research has shown that people with schizophrenia often have an impaired brain structure.
  • External factors. Regular stress, lack of social interaction and viral infection can lead to the development of schizophrenia. People who inherited the disease are more affected by external factors. Schizophrenia usually begins to manifest itself when the body undergoes physical and hormonal changes.

Anyone can experience this disease, regardless of where they live, race or culture. Schizophrenia affects women and men equally, only men show symptoms earlier. The development of the disease affects children over five years old. However, before transitional age is rare, adolescents are most affected.

The first signs of schizophrenia

Psychiatrists diagnose schizophrenia very carefully, because it is a kind of sentence. In order to timely notice the pathology, consult a doctor and start the process of adequate treatment, you need to know the first signs of schizophrenia.

According to popular belief, schizophrenia is manifested by hallucinations and delusions. In fact, the symptoms of this psychological disease are more diverse. Among them are emotional failures, changing interests, the emergence of fears.

In women, men, adolescents and children, the symptoms do not differ dramatically.

The first signs in men

  1. Emotional decline. The earliest sign of schizophrenia. At first, the attitude of a person towards a family becomes cold. In some cases, unmotivated hostility appears along with the splitting of emotions. The patient experiences hostility, hatred, love and interest at the same time.
  2. Inactivity, loss of interest, decreased activity. A person refuses to participate even in what concerns him directly. Due to the lack of desire and motivation, the patient quits his job and hobbies. Any cases fall into the category of "running."
  3. Closure, loss of contact with loved ones. The man breaks the existing connection and refuses to look for new buddies. This symptom may indicate schizophrenia or schizoid personality disorder.
  4. Changes in thinking. Illogical transition between thoughts. In this case, the person does not even notice. There may be prolonged meaningless reasoning and new expressions that were previously not used by patients.
  5. Speech changes. Speech becomes broken and consists of fragments of phrases. The listed changes at the initial stage of schizophrenia may manifest imperceptibly. Only a doctor can determine them.

The view that schizophrenia is accompanied by the development of dementia is erroneous. The changes concern only the thinking process and do not affect the intellect. The patient retains the knowledge, skills and abilities that he acquired before the disease. Because of the disease, he has no desire to search for these abilities for practical use, he does not want to learn and continue to develop.

The first signs in women

If you carefully study the statistical information, you will notice that every third patient with a diagnosis of schizophrenia is a woman. This is due to high emotionality, a tendency to depression and falling into stressful situations.

The successful restoration of working capacity, as well as social adaptation, depends on the stage of development at which the fight against schizophrenia is started.

  • Subject to change the manner of speech.Manifested in the form of inability to clearly and correctly express thoughts. The conversation is dominated by vague, non-meaningful phrases.
  • Hobbies and hobbies lose their appeal. The woman has lost interest in family, work, and housework.
  • Problems at school and work. Schizophrenia makes it difficult to fully perform the duties, solve problems and achieve goals.
  • Problems focusing on specific things. Patients are characterized by distraction, lethargy, inadequate and slow response to events.
  • Sociological manifestations. A girl with schizophrenia avoids a direct look, reluctantly makes contact and poorly expresses her own emotions. This is due to violations in gestures and facial expressions.

Schizophrenia has a significant effect on a woman’s behavior, her emotions, feelings and perceptions. It is extremely important to timely detect the pathology and consult a doctor.

The first signs in adolescents and children

Recognize schizophrenia in a child can be from the age of seven. Changes in behavior, unreasonable fear, conversations with invisible objects, a good reason for visiting a psychiatrist.

  1. Paranoia. The child imagines that people around him treat him with humiliation. He has the impression that everyone conspired against him.
  2. Hallucinations. Children hear voices and talk to them. They see things that do not exist in reality.
  3. Unreasonable fear. The child complains about the fear of non-standard things. Fears are significantly different from the traditional "horror stories."
  4. Insulation. Against the background of schizophrenia, the child's interest in games disappears. He ceases to communicate with peers, can not build long-term relationships with peers.
  5. Excessive moodiness. The behavior of the child is accompanied by sudden and groundless mood swings. In most cases, the apparent causes of this phenomenon are absent.
  6. Shattered speech. Schizophrenia leads to the fact that the child loses the ability to express thoughts normally and adequately lead the conversation in normal conditions.
  7. Chaotic thoughts. This sign is reduced to the inability of the child to distinguish sleep from a real event.

To consult a doctor was effective, it is necessary to keep a diary and record unusual symptoms. Further diagnosis is possible only in the psychiatrist's office.

Symptoms of schizophrenia

Doctors first discovered schizophrenia in the early nineteenth century.They immediately began to describe the symptoms of schizophrenia and select treatment methods. Initially, the disease was thought of as demonization or vice.

Symptomatology of schizophrenia is noticeable even to a person inexperienced in the medical field. The list of the main symptoms is represented by apathy, lack of will, isolation, strange behavior caused by delusional ideas and hallucinations.

Positive and negative symptoms

Experts share the symptoms of schizophrenia in two categories. This helps to better study the nature of the disease and correctly choose a treatment strategy.

Positive symptoms

  • In the human psyche, things appear that were not in their normal state. We are talking about hallucinations, emotional and motor disorders, delusions.
  • In schizophrenia, the patient is faced with auditory hallucinations. At the same time, he can not tell where the source of the voice is. But the patient is sure that the voice is addressing him, and strangers do not hear him.
  • The nonsense is caused by the impact of thoughts and actions. There are delusions of self-destruction or greatness. In the first case, the patient believes that he is unworthy to live, in the second he considers himself an outstanding person.
  • Movement disorders are represented by catatonia, which usually accompanies a severe form of the disease.At the moment of arousal, the patient is restless and aggressive, with a stupor he may not move for a long time, taking an uncomfortable position.

Negative symptoms

Such symptoms are characterized by loss of important components from the psyche, volitional and emotional sphere. Their list is autistic and emotional impoverishment.

Willful violations - a manifestation of severe schizophrenia. They boil down to complete indifference. A person can lie in bed for 24 hours without getting up to visit the toilet room. The patient is unable to concentrate and loses the ability to learn.

Positive symptoms are much better for the prognosis of the disease, since they are much easier to treat. Negative symptoms are almost completely not treated.

Schneider's classification

Schneider has compiled a list of psychotic symptoms that distinguish schizophrenia from other disorders.

  • Delirium, according to which external forces act from the side.
  • Believing that outsiders put certain thoughts into their heads or kidnap existing thoughts.
  • The feeling that outsiders are able to read the mind of the patient.
  • Voices that comment on the actions and thoughts of the patient or communicate with each other.

Disorganized symptoms

Sufferers of schizophrenia have different symptoms at different times. At the first appearance of the disease, the symptoms are unexpected and pronounced. Disorganized symptoms reflect the patient's inability to think normally and react fully.

  1. When talking, the patient uses meaningless words or makes meaningless sentences.
  2. The rapid transitions between thoughts.
  3. Lack of decision making ability.
  4. An excessive letter that has no meaning.
  5. Loss of things and forgetting basic information.
  6. Repeat gestures or movements. Walking in a circle, step by step moving back and forth.
  7. Difficulties in understanding feelings, sounds, and visual images.

Thinking and behavior of a person with disorganized symptoms are unnatural and prominent.

Types and forms of schizophrenia

Types and forms of schizophrenia differ in the symptomatology, the frequency of exacerbations and the activity of manifestation.

  • Paranoid. It occurs most often and is characterized by the predominance of the hallucinatory-delusional complex.It is accompanied by a disorder of thinking, motility and intelligence, but is not the main or primary symptom.
  • Gebefrenicheskaya. In this form of schizophrenia, thinking disorder dominates with stupidity, dementia, and a flattening of affect. Man's thinking is degrading. At the same time he behaves like a five year old child.
  • Catatonic. The prevalence of psychomotor disorders, represented by the alternation of periods of arousal and stupor. In a stupor, the patient may be immobilized for a long time. Epic pictures appear in his head, where he is the main character.
  • Manic. The patient has obsessive ideas. It constantly seems to him that someone is following him. Speech becomes abundant and verbose, and thinking acquires an associative character. Now there is no such form of schizophrenia, as it was isolated in an independent disease, called manic-depressive psychosis.
  • Sharp. This type of schizophrenia is accompanied by alternating seizures and remissions. The next attack proceeds much more heavily, and the symptoms become more pronounced.Regardless of the period, the patient remains anxious with suspicion and delusional interpretation. Occasionally hallucinations may appear.
  • Sluggish. The clinical picture of sluggish schizophrenia is significantly different from other types of illness, as it is not accompanied by hallucinations and delusions. Instead, a person suffers from asthenia, neurotic disorder and depersonalization.
  • Alcoholic. This kind of schizophrenia is not. At the same time, alcohol abuse can cause the development of the disease. The condition in which the person is after a long binge, it is accepted to call alcoholic psychosis. This condition is called schizophrenia, because it is accompanied by inadequate behavior, speech and thought disorders.

Diagnosis in adults and children

At the initial stage, the diagnosis of schizophrenia is extremely difficult. For this reason, modern psychiatrists observe the patient for 6 months, and only after that they put the final diagnosis.

Within 6 months the doctor conducts conversations with the patient and his relatives. Particular attention is paid to the analysis of symptoms, their dynamics and modifications.The doctor is extremely important to find out what was the patient's condition before the onset of the disease.

After confirming the diagnosis, the nervous system is subjected to a comprehensive examination, under the supervision of a qualified psychiatrist.

  1. Magnetic resonance imaging. Detects changes in brain structure in schizophrenia. Helps to study the functional activity of various brain segments.
  2. Electroencephalography. Method for a thorough study of the bioelectrical activity of the brain.
  3. Duplex scanning. It helps to eliminate vascular diseases - vascular atherosclerosis and pathology of venous outflow.
  4. Psychological tests. Using tests, the doctor determines the state of thinking, attention and memory of a sick person. The test results show abnormalities in the operation of specific brain segments.
  5. Neurotest. Detects autoantibodies to proteins found in nerve cells. Thanks to the neurotest, they will find out whether the nervous system is working properly.

In addition to the listed methods for diagnosing schizophrenia, the doctor analyzes the workings of the digestive, respiratory, cardiovascular, and endocrine systems of the body.Studies can be conducted on the content in the body of narcotic substances and hepatitis viruses, and analyzes of cerebrospinal fluid.

Tests for schizophrenia

Schizophrenia is the only mental illness that does not have radical methods of treatment and prevention. This is due to the fact that experts have not yet thoroughly studied the reasons for its appearance.

Tests for schizophrenia help to identify early deviations in the psyche and take appropriate measures. Psychiatrists advise not to perceive the test results as a medical diagnosis, since they only show information about the state of the psyche.

Not everyone agrees to pass such a test. Some consider it completely useless, others fear that the results will affect life. Although, even a completely healthy person may suffer from mental disorders caused not by heredity, but by regular problems, stress and fatigue.

The essence of tests is reduced to determining the perception of situations, colors, logical chains and forms. This approach helps to detect the tendency to schizophrenia and other mental illnesses, and to confirm the normal perception of what is happening.

Mask test

During the test, a person is shown a picture of the mask shown on the reverse side. If a healthy person looks at a picture, certain indicators appear in his brain - roundness of forms, shadows, volumes and so on. Although the image is flat, he sees a convex mask.

At the same time, such a picture cannot deceive a schizophrenic, since he sees a concave mask. This is due to the fact that the patient does not pay attention to the alarm indicators. The link between the phenomenon and the subject is missing. From the overall picture, he grabs one mask and states that it is concave.

“Luscher Color Test”

During the test, a set consisting of 8 different colors with assigned numbers is used. A person must build these colors in terms of attractiveness. Carry out the procedure during the day and in natural light conditions. Practice shows that people suffering from mental disorders, prefer yellow color, which is considered the color of madness.

Often a person is offered something to draw and analyze the colors that he uses. Painted by the hand of a schizophrenic, the work is a collection of unnatural combinations. Black sun or pink grass.

What do the colors mean? Red color indicates manic schizophrenia, black - an indicator of depression, fear and feelings. Shades of white are inherent in hallucinations.

Methods of treating schizophrenia

Schizophrenia contributes to the disintegration of personal usefulness. Symptoms usually begin to appear from a young age. Without treatment, the disease progresses, resulting in a person drops out of society.

Over the years, numerous treatments for schizophrenia have been developed. For the struggle using traditional and traditional medicine, psychological and social technology.

Clinical methods

It is a mistake to consider schizophrenia a mental disability. And although schizophrenia is still incurable, modern clinical methods make it possible to control the manifestations of the ailment, which preserves the efficiency of a person and his adaptation to the social environment. The only exceptions are the running stages.

  • Drug therapy. Provides for the use of drugs based on individual indications. The drugs used are focused on calming the patient, eliminating hallucinations and delusional states.Innovative drugs practically do not cause side effects, do not contain toxic substances, do not inhibit mental abilities and psyche.
  • Psychotherapy. Focuses on correcting behavioral responses and increasing self-esteem. It allows you to avoid isolation of a person from society and family, and maintain performance. With the help of psychotherapy, a person learns to control emotions, behave correctly and do not go into despair or deep depression.
  • Instructing. Doctors advise the patient on family relationships, vocational guidance, choice of activities and behavior with other people.
  • Work with family. The psychiatrist gives useful advice to the relatives of the patient regarding behavior, methods of contact, and features of the reaction. Only in this case, the family will be able to help and support.

Thanks to modern methods of treatment, doctors are able to prevent the rapidly progressing course of the disease, to facilitate the life of the schizophrenic and members of his family.

Psychological and social therapy

The method of psychological and social adaptation is an essential element in the treatment of schizophrenia.With the right approach, psychological and social therapy provides an excellent result of a sustainable nature. This is due to the fact that a person begins to realize the existence of a problem, and tries to take an active part in solving it.

  1. The doctor treats the patient sensitively, carefully and with understanding. To the schizophrenic willingly went to contact, the doctor tries to earn trust.
  2. Specialist pressure is unacceptable. To prove to schizophrenic without result that he is ill, as he considers himself to be an absolutely healthy person.
  3. During the issue with the patient, they conduct a conversation and report what is happening to him. It is important for the patient to take medication regularly. This will contribute to social adaptation and to avoid another exacerbation.
  4. Behavioral treatment is carried out in a hospital or at home. Social therapy helps the patient to curb the attacks of hallucinations, and teaches us to distinguish between visions and realities.
  5. Labor therapy plays a significant role in the treatment. The research results showed that correct social adaptation is extremely important for the patient, since it reduces the likelihood of relapse.
  6. They conduct group classes for schizophrenics in which brothers in misfortune share problems and experiences under the supervision of psychiatrists. The social adaptation of patients is facilitated by drawing lessons and other arts.

Treatment of schizophrenia requires a lot of time due to the high complexity. During treatment, a person should understand that his loved ones need it. If he feels that he is treated with understanding and respect, his condition will improve, and the period of remission will not take long.


It is possible to treat schizophrenia at home, clinic or neuropsychiatric dispensary. In any of these cases, medicinal preparations are mandatory.

I propose to talk about medications that are prescribed to combat schizophrenia.

  • Neuroleptics. They are the basis of drug treatment. In the fight against schizophrenia, antidepressants, tranquilizers, vitamin complexes, sleeping pills are used. The doctor chooses the drug and dosage depending on the task. Tasks change as the symptoms change.With an exacerbation, neuroleptics with a quick soothing effect are prescribed. The drugs are administered intravenously or intramuscularly.
  • Neuroleptic drugs of the first generation - Chlorpromazine and Levomepromazin. Atypical antipsychotics - Klopixol and Zipreks. The first medicines with a strong sedative effect, the second are characterized by better tolerability.
  • During the stabilizing phase, drugs in the form of tablets or drops are used. Often, schizophrenia is treated with injection depots. The doctor makes an injection once a month. The drug, slowly released from the injection site, regularly enters the body.
  • In the treatment of schizophrenia, the use of drugs was found - Fluanksol, Haloperidol, Rispolept, Staterisan. Only a doctor can choose a remedy and determine the dosage.
  • At the stage of rehabilitation, antipsychotics are applied with an “anti-negative” effect on the body. In the list of such medicines Abilifai, Invega. They improve memory and mental abilities, restore mood and activity.

Folk remedies

Typically, treatment of schizophrenia involves medication in the hospital and social adaptation measures.

The acute form of schizophrenia is treated only in a psychiatric hospital.In this case, insulin therapy is combined with treatment with neuroleptic drugs. Traditional medicine uses herbal remedies that soothe the body and have a hypnotic effect. Sometimes they resort to fasting and hydrotherapy.

Traditional methods are not clinically proven and doctors do not recommend using them.

  1. Healers from Tibet treat schizophrenia with vegetable oil, which has lain in the ground at half a meter depth for at least a year. This oil is rubbed the body of a sick person. The course of treatment is thirty sessions in a day. In the breaks you can bathe a schizophrenic. After the first course, pause for a month, then repeat the course.
  2. According to folk experts, homemade balsams cure schizophrenia. The baskets of daisies, corrider wreaths, hawthorn flowers and dried flower herbs should be mixed in equal quantities. Mixture pour moonshine and take the finished product on a spoon after a meal.
  3. Baths with the addition of healing herbs relieve symptoms. When motor activity is disturbed, a decoction of marsh purifier will come to the rescue. Fifty grams of crushed swamp Chistek boil for 10 minutes under the lid and add to a bath filled with water.Water temperature within 37 degrees.
  4. Baths with the addition of decoction of leaves, twigs or bark of aspen. Random amount of raw materials boil 10 minutes, strain and add to the bath. The duration of one procedure is at least 20 minutes. A similar bath can be made from birch or linden raw materials.
I have led folk recipes for acquaintance and broadening of horizons; they should not be considered as a panacea and used in treatment.

Treatment of schizophrenia at home

Undoubtedly, home therapy of schizophrenia is possible, with the exception of the neglected state, when the disease becomes dangerous for people and society. In this case, complex treatment in a psychiatric clinic is indispensable. If the disease is characterized by a sluggish course and mild symptoms, you can be treated at home, under the supervision of a doctor.

Recommendations for home therapy

  • Fresh air in the room. Regularly air the room regardless of the season. Walk in the park away from the noisy streets.
  • Walking In the summer to walk, preferring the morning and evening time. You can walk in the afternoon, after putting on a hat,otherwise, overheating may cause deterioration.
  • Avoid conflicts and stressful situations causing a surge of negative emotions.
  • Food. From the diet to bring strong tea, coffee and fatty meat dishes. When a mental disorder to eat plant foods rich in nutrients. Give up alcohol and cigarettes.
  • Physical activity and sport. Increase the level of physical activity. Morning jogging with gymnastics and swimming will normalize blood circulation, increase muscle tone and fill the body with energy.
  • Daily regime. Go to bed, wake up, eat and go for a walk.

Video from the program "Pulse" channel Russia 24

In conclusion, I will add that the most important element in the treatment of schizophrenia is family support. Relatives should treat the patient with patience and understanding, helping to prevent disruptions. This will prevent exacerbation of the disease. Do not throw each other and provide support.

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