Psychiatric Disorders, Diseases, and Drugs
Schizophrenia means “the splitting of psychic functions.” It is a psychotic disorder characterized by loss of contact with the environment, by noticeable deterioration in the level of functioning in everyday life, and by disintegration of personality expressed as disorder of feeling, thought, perception, and behavior. The first symptoms start to appear in young adulthood. “Its symptoms are complex and diverse; they overlap greatly with those of other psychiatric disorders and frequently change during the progression of the disorder (Pinel, 2009).” “People with schizophrenia often suffer terrifying symptoms such as hearing internal voices not heard by others, or believing that other people are reading their minds, controlling their thoughts, or plotting to harm them (Schizophrenia.com).” Not all symptoms appear in every case of schizophrenia. Although, to help the studies and treatments there are two kinds of symptoms considered, positive and negative symptoms. Positive symptoms seem to represent an excess or distortion of normal function. Some of these are delusions, hallucinations, inappropriate affect, incoherent speech or thought, and odd behavior. Delusions can be those of being controlled, or persecution, and of grandeur. Hallucinations are imaginary voices making critical comments or telling patients what to do. Inappropriate affect is failure to react with the appropriate emotion to positive or negative events. Incoherent speech or thought is illogical thinking, echolalia, peculiar associations among ideas, and belief in supernatural forces. Odd behavior is difficulty performing everyday tasks, lack of personal hygiene, talking in rhymes, catatonia (remaining motionless, often in awkward positions for long periods). Negative symptoms seem to represent a reduction or loss of normal function. Some of these are affective flattening, alogia, avolition, and anhedonia. Affective flattening is the reduction or absence...
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