Schizophrenia is an illness, a medical condition.
It affects the normal functioning of the brain, interfering with a person’s ability to think, feel and act. Some do recover completely, and, with time, most find that their symptoms improve. However, for many, it is a prolonged illness which can involve years of distressing symptoms and disability. People affected by schizophrenia have one ‘personality,’ just like everyone else. It is a myth and totally untrue that those affected have a so-called ‘split personality’.
What are the symptoms?
If not receiving treatment, people with schizophrenia experience persistent symptoms of what is called psychosis.
- Confused thinking
- When acutely ill, people with psychotic symptoms experience disordered thinking. The everyday thoughts that let us live our daily lives become confused and don’t join up properly.
- A delusion is a false belief held by a person which is not held by others of the same cultural background.
- The person sees, hears, feels, smells or tastes something that is not actually there. The hallucination is often of disembodied voices which no one else can hear. Other associated symptoms are low motivation and changed feelings.