The symptoms of schizophrenia usually develop slowly over several months, or even years. Sometimes, a person might experience a lot of the symptoms, while at other times, they might only experience a few of them.
People who suffer from any kind of schizophrenia might have trouble working, going to school and keeping friends. Other problems might include suicidal behaviors and thoughts, anxiety and depression.
At the beginning of their illness, a person with schizophrenia might experience:
As the illness progresses, problems with behavior, thoughts and emotions might start, such as:
There are 4 basic kinds of Schizophrenia: Paranoid, Disorganized, Catatonic, and Undifferentiated. The symptoms of each type are slightly different although some of the symptoms overlap.
Some symptoms of paranoid schizophrenia are unexplainable anger, anxiety, a false belief that people are trying to hurt you, your family or your friends.
Some symptoms of disorganized schizophrenia are childlike behavior, trouble expressing ideas and thinking clearly and a lack of emotion.
Some symptoms of catatonic schizophrenia are a lack of response to other people, inactivity, strange facial expressions and rigid muscles or posture.
Symptoms of undifferentiated schizophrenia usually include a mixture of symptoms from the kinds of schizophrenia listed above.
There are no easy medical tests that can be used to diagnose schizophrenia. The actual diagnosis is based on an interview done by a psychiatrist with the patient and his or her family members. Sometimes a brain scan might be done which could show abnormal activity in some area of the brain.
Some things that help make the diagnosis of schizophrenia are:
In all cases if a person experiences any of the symptoms below, they should go to the emergency room, call a mental health crisis line or get in touch with a doctor immediately if:
This simple questionnaire is designed to help you determine if you have symptoms of disorder and could benefit from professional help.