This is the 28th in a series of blogs, using answers I provided to pass Mental Health qualifications. This series of blogs are about different types of depression, this being the second of three about Schizophrenia.
As with many mental health subjects, they can all be massive topics with reams of books written on them. I will aim to break schizophrenia down into 3 easy to read blogs, describing schizophrenia and the possible causes, how schizophrenia can affect individuals and the people around them, and how it can be treated and managed.
I strongly believe there is no one-size-fits all approach to managing any kind of mental health condition. It is the main reason why I am not a massive advocate of medication. I prefer to consider natural, healthy ways to recognise and manage any kind of mental ill health, tailoring each treatment and therapy to suit each individual. I do this from experience. It is what helped me which is why I believe it can help others too.
The feelings an individual with schizophrenia may experience
Some can include:
Isolation due to discriminatory names and lack of education by others in society.
Feel neglected by society and treated as less-than-human.
Feel scared, frightened, angry, frustrated, and confused.
Feeling exhausted having to fight battles to get the right support.
Suicidal thoughts with about 1 in 5 of the individuals committing suicide.
Feeling out of control of the circumstances that could be the trigger factors.
The ways schizophrenia affects the individual and their life
Psychosis, hearing voices and paranoia can make the person feel extreme bouts of anxiety, confusion and upset. Symptoms can be so bad, the individual can refuse to leave the house, causing further problems relating to social, physical, and emotional concerns.
Withdrawing from society could result in the person giving up on looking after themselves and could end up giving up on life altogether.
If the person hears voices, the voices are very likely to suggest they harm themselves.
All the above can have a massive impact on relationships, causing further stress and problems.
Having schizophrenia, and the associated social problems and lack of ability to focus, can make work near impossible, which can cause financial problems, exasperating potential homelessness concerns and inability to look after themselves.
When life is considered to be so bad, the person can take to drink and drugs to numb and cope or attempt suicide.
How an individual’s schizophrenia may affect others
Upset and frustration of not being able to help the person with their thoughts and beliefs, perhaps even more so if they are mistrusted by the individual.
Upset caused by negative media coverage, which can harm the ability to seek and obtain help for themselves, either for support as caregivers or for their own emotional endurance.
Feeling exhausted fighting battles to get the right support.
If the individual does really isolate themselves completely, the others may suffer some form of guilt and lack love and emotion as they too withdraw from the individual.
If the schizophrenic person has drink and drug problems that could involve the police, for instance, the family and friends could start to feel resentful of the time it takes to bail them out, collect them from police stations etc. The resentment could grow to the point where they themselves socially and emotionally withdraw from the individual.
Others may start to suffer financial hardship as they spend time and money on the individual with no financial support from either the individual and/or social services and local authorities.
The next blog will continue with how schizophrenia can be managed.
Tracey of PlumEssence Therapies and Training is a qualified stress management consultant, mental health first aider, clinical hypnotherapist and body work therapist focusing on helping reduce and alleviate concerns connected to both physical and emotional wellbeing. Tracey is also a teacher and trainer, delivering workshops and accredited mental health courses.
Tracey is available for a no-obligation chat to see how we could work together on 01889 808388 or firstname.lastname@example.org