Topics: Schizophrenia, Mental disorder, Catatonia Pages: 9 (2087 words) Published: October 13, 2014
When thinking of psychological disorders, do you really know just how many different disorders there are? How well do you know the definitions of the most heard of disorders such as bipolar and schizophrenia? Most people think of split personalities when they hear the word schizophrenia, but schizophrenia does not mean multiple personalities at all. Dealing with schizophrenia may be one of the hardest psychological disorders to live and deal with every day. There are many different causes, types, symptoms, complications, and coping skills involved with schizophrenia. The word “schizophrenia” does mean “split mind,” but it refers to a disruption of the usual balance of emotions and thinking ( The American Psychiatric Association defines schizophrenia as a disorder with active symptoms for at least one month, consisting of delusions, hallucinations, disorganized speech, grossly disorganized/bizarre behavior, and/or lack of organized speech, activity, or emotions (DeLisi, 2006). It is also known that the ability of people to function normally and care for themselves does tend to deteriorate over time ( to the point that someone needs to care for them. The early onset of this disease generally occurs between the ages of 15 to 30 years old and its chronic course makes this a particularly disabling disorder for patients and their families (Mueser, Jeste, 2008). Many people do not realize there are six different subtypes of schizophrenia. These subtypes include catatonic, paranoid, disorganized, residual, and undifferentiated. Catatonic schizophrenics have a marked decrease in reactivity to the environment, sometimes reaching an extreme degree of complete unawareness known as a catatonic stupor (Mueser, Jeste, 2008). They maintain a rigid posture and resisting efforts to be moved known as catatonic rigidity (Mueser, Jeste, 2008). They experience active resistance to instructions or attempts to be moved known as catatonic negativism (Mueser, Jeste, 2008). They assume inappropriate or bizarre postures known as catatonic posturing (Mueser, Jeste, 2008), or they have purposeless and unstimulated excessive motor activity known as catatonic excitement (as cited in Mueser, Jeste, 2008). Paranoid schizophrenics are characterized by having delusions and hallucinations ( This type generally involves less functional impairment and offers the best hope for improvement ( Most people who have this type of schizophrenia experience delusions of grandeur (DeLisi, 2006) where they think that one is or can have extraordinary powers or abilities that are not possessed in reality (DeLisi, 2006). They may also experience hyper religiosity (DeLisi, 2006) which is defined as knowing that God has singled one out for a special mission and also have excessive and/or irrational suspicion or distrust of others in the sense of thinking that others are trying to poison them or that a complicated plot by the government against the individual is occurring (DeLisi, 2006). Disorganized schizophrenics are characterized by disorganized thoughts and inappropriate expressions of emotions and this type generally involves the most functional impairment and offers the least hope for improvement. This subtype of schizophrenia is also characterized by incoherent speech, flat or exaggerated emotions, and social withdrawal (Huffman, 2009). Undifferentiated schizophrenics are the largest group of people with schizophrenia and their dominant symptoms come from all of the different subtypes of schizophrenia ( With those that have this subtype of schizophrenia, the characteristics fluctuate so much that is hard to pinpoint exactly what type of schizophrenia they really do have. People with this subtype must also show at least two of the symptoms of schizophrenia such as delusions, disorganized speech, and/or...

References: DeLisi, L. E., MD. (2006). 100 Questions and Answers about Schizophrenia: Painful Minds. Sudbury, MA; Mississauga, ON Canada; London: Jones and Bartlett Publishers.
Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research. (2010, November 5). Schizophrenia. Retrieved Dec 5, 2013, from
Mueser, K. T., & Jeste, D. V. (2008). Clinical Handbook of Schizophrenia. New York, NY: The Guilford Press.
Huffman, K. (2009). Psychology in Action (8th Ed.). Hoboken, NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.
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