How to Treat Schizophrenia?

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Treatment of Schizophrenia

As we know that actual causes or factors behind schizophrenia are still not sure therefore its treatment depends upon the symptoms manifested by patient in various cases. Therefore the treatment methods for schizophrenia can be broadly categorized into two options:

1- Using Antipsychotic Drugs

2- Applying Psychotherapeutic Techniques

1- Using Antipsychotic Drugs

Since 1950s psychiatrists are using antipsychotic medication to alleviate the misery of people suffering schizophrenia. These drugs can be divided into typical and atypical antipsychotic drugs.

Typical antipsychotic drugs include chlorpromazine, perphenazine, fluphenazine and haloperidol which are traditional or older than atypical drugs used today. These antipsychotic drugs treat patient for all known symptoms of schizophrenia including hallucination, delusions, mental disability, flat effects and agitated behavior. But while using these drugs patient must be checked up by his physician regularly to monitor the impact of these drugs over his metabolism, blood pressure, heart beat and mental functioning. In case of any side effect these drugs must be avoided to prevent any possible bad consequences. Clozapine is one of those antipsychotic drugs have been using now-a-days to treat schizophrenics.

Side Effects of Using Antipsychotic Drugs for Schizophrenia

Antipsychotic drugs can cause many irregularities and problems for the patient in some cases. It can disturb his internal body system including blood pressure, heart beat, metabolism, cholesterol level and menstrual cycle in females etc. They can also affect normal body movements and focusing abilities by creating dizziness, drowsiness and blurred vision. In some cases these drugs are also reported to cause poor muscle movements, rigidity and restlessness.

‘Tardive Dyskinesia’ is a condition characterized by uncontrollable muscle movement often caused by long term use of antipsychotic drugs. In such condition patient must be checked by his physician to take decision about stopping use of these drugs. Normally this condition is controlled by avoiding such drugs in future.

2- Applying Psychotherapeutic Techniques  

The main purpose of using psychotherapy is to make patient able to deal with everyday challenges, disorder complications and personal relations. It enables them to take care of themselves in a normal way when nobody is there to look after them. Schizophrenics learn various management skills during the course of therapeutic treatment to adjust themselves to life realities. Some of those treatment techniques are discussed here:

a- Disorder Management Skill

In this method patient is trained to recognize the factors behind his illness, control those factors, deal with symptoms and get back to normal life flow successfully.

b- Dealing with Drug Abuse

During this treatment strategy patient learn to cope with substance abuse problem. He learns to control his addiction and adopt alternative ways to turn the way of such addictive behavior and severe emotional tendencies towards specific abuse.

c- Rehabilitation Training

Rehabilitation involve learning everything important to follow the natural life activities including social communication, job counseling, duty performance, money management, business handling, decision making and analyzing various situations accurately. Rehabilitation plays a vital role in real comeback of a schizophrenic to its normal life rhythm.

d- Comprehensive Family Education Program

In such programs special coping strategies are taught to family members of a schizophrenic to deal him in a proper way in case of severe symptoms. It not only involves dealing them properly but also supports them to come back to normal life style gradually.

e- Involving Self Help Groups

Self help groups do not involve professionals, rather these groups comprises trained people who play an important role in treating schizophrenics successfully. They all live like group members where they help out and support each other in a natural way. It helps in returning back to life control and balance through mutual support and encouragement in a friendly way.
Click here to learn how a degree in healthcare can help develop treatments for those affected by schizophrenia.

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