Schizophrenia is a mental disorder that affects the brain. People with schizophrenia may hear voices that are not there. There are some people who are convinced that there are other people reading their minds, controlling how they think, or plotting against them. Other people who talk to someone that have schizophrenia may find it hard to make sense of what a person with schizophrenia is talking about. Other times a person with schizophrenia will sit still and not talk for hours, or they will seem completely fine until they start explaining what they are thinking. There is some sort of heritable genetic component to schizophrenia. This illness occurs in 1% of the general population, it occurs in 10% of people who have a parent, brother, sister who has schizophrenia. A person with an aunt, uncle, grandparent or cousin with the disease also develops schizophrenia more often than the general population. Identical twins of a person with schizophrenia have a higher risk of getting the disease.
Schizophrenia commonly strikes between the ages 15 to 25 among men and 25 to 35 in women. The disorder develops slowly that the person with schizophrenia does not know he or she has it for a long time. A person with schizophrenia may show signs that others may notice before they notice themselves. A person with schizophrenia may seem without goals in their life, become eccentric and unmotivated, they may isolate themselves and remove themselves from family and friends. The warning signs to watch for are
• Lack of motivation
• Social isolation & withdrawal
• Irrational, bizarre or questioning behavior or odd statements or beliefs
• Increases paranoia or questioning others’ motivations
• Becoming more emotionless
• Hostility or suspiciousness
• Increasing reliance on drugs or alcohol (an attempt to self-medicate)
• Speaking in a strange manner unlike themselves
• Insomnia or oversleeping.
Having a number of these symptoms together should be cause for concern, especially if it appears that the person is getting worse. Environment plays a very important role in a person with schizophrenia. In order for treatment to be successful the patient should have a stable living situation and a support system that will help him or her.
Schizophrenia can emerge with stressful experiences, cannabis and LSD are known to cause schizophrenia relapses. John Nash, who worked at Princeton University and won the Nobel Prize in economics, lived...