Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that could arise in any person. Currently, about one percent of the U.S population is diagnosed with this disorder. Schizophrenic patients show various kinds of symptoms including hallucinations, inability to initiate plans, and problems with attention. Additionally, children with Schizophrenia may also show decreasing academic performance. Recently, a lot of myths has been associated with this disease.
The following article will help you to debunk 5 common myths about this disorder, with the help of wisdom coming from an expert called Dr. Simon Rego, PsyD. He is a clinical psychologist with decades of experience in Cognitive behavioral therapy.
Myth 1: People with Schizophrenia are unable to hold any form of employment throughout their lives.
Truth: According to Dr. Rego, some individuals with Schizophrenia are able to function quite well once they are undergoing psychosocial and medical treatments. His claim can also be supported with the evidence coming from the article Current Opinion in Psychiatry: May 2018
According to this article, a greater proportion of patients with Schizophrenia will be able to recover and obtain better social functioning with proper treatment. About one-fourth of youngsters with Schizophrenia who are treated will recover completely. Ultimately they will be able to lead normal lives with only a few insignificant symptoms.
The main reason which makes it possible for schizophrenic patients to cope up with their lives is psychosocial support. Psychotherapy, family health, and healthy interactions also help schizophrenic patients to recover rapidly. However, the patients that continuously face a hard time holding down a job requires prolonged treatment.
Myth 2. Schizophrenic patients are always violent
Truth: Patients with Schizophrenia is more likely to become a victim of violence rather than becoming the perpetrator according to Dr. Rego. He also states that schizophrenic patients are more likely to be homeless due to becoming unemployed, where they are assaulted.
Anger problems are not always related to Schizophrenia, but sometimes schizophrenic patients can become violent. However, with the help of anger management therapy and counseling, this problem too can be rectified.
Myth 3. Schizophrenic patients have a split personality
Truth: Split personality relates to a rare condition called Multiple Personality Disorder. While Schizophrenia is a thought disorder according to Dr. Rego. Schizophrenic patients may experience a breakdown between behavior and emotions due to confusion between reality and fantasy.
This is the reason that gives rise to the myth about split personality. People may associate hallucinations and agitated body movements with Schizophrenia, but those are only the positive symptoms of the disease. Schizophrenia also includes negative symptoms like reduced speaking, difficulty in sustaining activities, etc. Apart from that schizophrenic patients may also experience cognitive symptoms like inability to understand and use the information to make decisions, problems in focusing.
Myth 4. Schizophrenic patients require long term hospitalization all the time
Truth: There is a wide range of treatments and procedures used to treat schizophrenic patients and long term hospitalization is just one of them. Other treatment methods include acute hospitalization, individual and group therapy, outpatient care, and social therapy. More and more patients are gaining the benefits of outpatient care nowadays. Medications include Antipsychotics like Olanzapine, Aripiprazole, Asenapine, and cariprazine. According to mainstream psychiatry basic research and psychopharmacology, antipsychotics functions by blocking their effects at Dopamine receptors. Long term hospitalization is only used for patients who are getting inadequate amounts of support.
Myth 5. Schizophrenia is directly associated with bad parenting
Truth: For a long time it was believed that the father or the mother is responsible when a child develops Schizophrenia. However, Dr. Rego has disapproved this claim stating that there is no evidence to show that Schizophrenia is directly associated with the upbringing of a child. This claim is also supported by the evidence coming from Schizoprenia.com.
However in my opinion, if the child experiences a lot of stress while living in the family, that might trigger Schizophrenia to begin. This is because prolonged stress leads to Schizophrenia. Academic stress may also lead to Schizophrenia in the long run.
Even though direct family members are not involved in causing a person to acquire Schizophrenia, the disease may run in families due to hereditary factors. A child of a family which has a history of Schizophrenia will be more susceptible to the disease than a child from a healthy family. As a result, it is advisable for such persons to reach out to Genetic counselors to omit future complications.
So what do you think about it? tell me all about your thoughts in the comments below.