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Schizophrenia Research Paper

1327 words - 5 pages

SchizophreniaDuring the 1950s, mentally disordered people who were harmful to society andthemselves could be treated with medications and were able to return safely to theircommunities. During the 1980s, the cost of health care increased more than any othercost in our national economy. As a result, strategic planning has been made to reducecosts. "The political decision made to deinstitutionalize chronic mental patients startedwith the appearance of phenothiazine medications. Dramatically reducing the instabilityinfluenced by psychosis, these medications were of great significance to manyindividuals with serious mental disorders. At both the state and federal levels,legislators looked at the high cost of long-term psychiatric hospitalization. Socialscientists guaranteed them that community-based care would be in the best interests ofall concerned: the mentally ill and the general, tax-paying public." It wasbelieved that a social breakdown syndrome would develop in chronically mentally illpersons who were institutionalized. The characteristics of this syndrome weresubmission to authority, withdrawal, lack of initiative, and excessive dependence on theinstitution (Seeds).Schizophrenia is the most common psychoses in the United States affectingaround one percent of the United States population. It is characterized by a deepwithdrawal from interpersonal relationships and a retreat into a world of fantasy. Thisplunge into fantasy results in a loss of contact from reality that can vary from mild tosevere. Psychosis has more than one acceptable definition. The psychoses aredifferent from other groups of psychiatric disorders in their degree of severity,withdrawal, alteration in affect, impairment of intellect, and regression (Insight).In psychotic disorders, the intellect is involved in the actual psychotic process,resulting in derangement of language, thought, and judgment. Schizophrenia is calleda formal thought disorder. Thinking and understanding of reality are usually severelyimpaired. The most severe and prolonged regressions are seen in the psychoses,regression. There is a falling back to earlier behavioral levels. In schizophrenia thismay include returning to primitive forms of behavior, such as curling up into a fetalposition, eating with one's hands, and so forth. The symptoms of schizophrenia usuallyoccur during adolescence or early adulthood, except for paranoid schizophrenia, whichusually has a later onset. The process of schizophrenia is often slow, with theexception of catatonia, which may have an abrupt onset. As an adolescent, a personwho later develops schizophrenia is often antisocial with others, lonely, and depressed.Plans for the future may appear to others as vague or unrealistic (Seeds).It is possible that there may be a preschizophrenic phase a year or two beforethe disorder is diagnosed. This phase may include neurotic symptoms such as acute orchronic anxiety, phobias, obsessions, and compulsions or may reveal...

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