Diagnosis and Treatment
By Jennifer M Brown
Axia College of University of Phoenix
Schizophrenia is known to run in families. Although there is a genetic risk for schizophrenia, it is not likely that genes alone are sufficient to cause the disorder. Some environmental risk factors for this disorder include; exposure to viruses or malnutrition in while in the womb, problems during birth, and stressful environmental conditions. The brains of people with Schizophrenia do not look much different from people who do not have it. The differences are so small, sometimes it is only that the ventricles of the brain appear slightly larger than those who don’t have it. The brain undergoes major changes during puberty, and these changes could trigger psychotic symptoms.
The symptoms of Schizophrenia fall into three categories: Positive symptoms, Negative symptoms, and Cognitive symptoms. Positive symptoms include unusual thoughts or perceptions, including hallucinations, delusions and thought disorders. Negative symptoms represent a loss or decrease in the ability to initiate plans, speak or express emotions. Cognitive symptoms are problems with attention, certain types of memory, and functions that allow us to plan and organize. Positive symptoms are easily recognized, whereas cognitive symptoms are subtle and often only detected when neuropsychological tests are performed. Negative symptoms often make people with this disorder neglect basic hygiene and they may even need help with daily activities. People with schizophrenia are not especially prone to violence and often prefer to be left alone. If someone with paranoid schizophrenia becomes violent, the violence is most often directed at family members and takes place at home.
The causes of schizophrenia are still unknown to this day, which only allows current treatments to focus on eliminating the symptoms of the disease. Psychotherapy is often used in conjunction with a medication plan, which allows the...