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Does Schizophrenia Get Worse Without Medication

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Are You Pyroluric The Zinc Link

The 4 Schizophrenia Symptoms You Need to Know

Possibly one of the most significant undiscovered discoveries in the nutritional treatment of mental illness is that many mentally ill people are deficient in vitamin B6 and zinc. But this deficiency is no ordinary deficiency: you cant correct it by simply eating more foods that are rich in zinc and B6. It is connected with the abnormal production of a group of chemicals called pyrroles. A person with a high level of pyrroles in the urine needs more B6 and zinc than usual, since they rob the body of these essential nutrients, increasing a persons requirements to stay healthy.

The test for pyroluria is remarkably simple and very inexpensive. When you add a chemical known as Erhlichs reagant to urine, it will turn mauve if there are krytpopyrroles present. Dubbed mauve factor in the 1960s, this was found in 11 per cent of normal people, 24 per cent of disturbed children, 42 per cent of psychiatric patients and 52 per cent of schizophrenics. Dr Carl Pfeiffer and Dr Arthur Sohler at Princetons Brain Bio Center worked out that these abnormal chemicals would bind to B6 and zinc, inducing deficiency. With this knowledge, effective therapy was at hand.

The Signs and Symptoms of Pyroluria

Pyroluria is often a stress-related condition, with symptoms usually beginning in the teenage years after a stressful event such as exams or the breakup of a relationship.

What Myths Are There About Schizophrenia

There are some myths or mistaken beliefs about schizophrenia which come from the media. For example,

  • Schizophrenia means someone has a split personality

This is not the case. The mistake may come from the fact that the name ‘schizophrenia’ comes from two Greek words meaning ‘split’ and ‘mind’.

  • Schizophrenia causes people to be violent

Research shows that only a small number of people with the illness may become violent. The same way as a small minority of the general public may become violent.

People with schizophrenia are far more likely to be harmed by other people than other people are to be harmed by them. But as these incidents can be shocking, the media often report them in a way which emphasises the mental health diagnosis. This can create fear and stigma in the general public.

Doesn’t Schizophrenia Make People Dangerous

Usually not. Any violence is usually sparked off by street drugs or alcohol – not unlike people who dont suffer from schizophrenia.

There is a higher risk of violent behaviour if you have schizophrenia, but it is very small compared to the effects of drugs and alcohol. People with schizophrenia are far more likely to be harmed by other people than other people are to be harmed by them.

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Medications For Schizophrenia Treatment

Antipsychotic drugs are often used to treat schizophrenia. These medications help relieve hallucinations, delusions, and thinking problems.

Antipsychotics work by changing the way certain chemicals, called neurotransmitters, act in the brain. Antipsychotics help control the function of brain circuits involved in thinking, mood, and perception.

There are many different antipsychotic drugs on the market. You may hear your doctor refer to first-generation or second-generation antipsychotics.

Newer drugs aren’t necessarily better drugs. Several reviews and studies in adults and children have found that the differences between the classes are relatively small and difficult to predict. Both classes may be about as effective at reducing so-called “positive”schizophrenia symptoms, such as hallucinations or delusions, though second-generation antipsychotics may be better at treating so-called “negative” symptoms, such as depressed mood and social withdrawal. Not every drug will work for every person.

Schizophrenia Never Gets Better

What are some facts about schizophrenia?

1 in 4-5 people with schizophrenia recover completely. 3 out of 5 people with schizophrenia will be helped or get better with treatment.

If there is an inaccurate or abusive item about schizophrenia in the press, a radio talk show or on TV. don’t get depressed, get active. Write a letter, email them, phone them and tell them where they are wrong. It does work.


Shine: supporting people with mental ill health : Information Helpline: 1890 621 631

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Take Care Of Yourself Too

As a family member, its important to take care of yourself. Try to maintain your regular schedule and activities, such as your exercise routine and hobbies. Ask another family member or good friend to provide help with caregiving, especially in the early days of your loved one’s illness. If you need help balancing time for self-care with caregiving duties, check out the BC Schizophrenia Societys Family Respite Program.

Use Empathy Not Arguments

Symptoms of schizophrenia like hallucinations or delusions can take some time to stop even when people are receiving treatment and following their treatment plan. As a group, these very distressing symptoms are called psychosis. Many people have a hard time responding to a loved ones hallucinations or delusions. Its best to avoid arguing about these experiences. Remember that delusion are symptoms of schizophreniathey are not thoughts that you can talk someone out of. Telling someone that their experiences arent real or arent true doesnt help when the experiences feel very real to that person! A better approach is to empathize with the feelings that hallucinations or delusions bring upwithout confirming or denying the hallucination or delusion. For example, if a loved one is frustrated or upset when they hear voices, it isnt helpful to say something like, Youre okay! It isnt real. I dont hear anything. Instead, you might say, I can only image how upsetting that voice must be. I can see the voice makes you feel scared. Know that with good treatment and support, symptoms like hallucinations and delusions become much easier for people to manage and lose importance.

Also Check: What Are The Three Stages Of Schizophrenia

Has Anyone Been Cured Schizophrenia

There is no known cure for schizophrenia, but the outlook for people who have this illness is improving. There are many ways to treat schizophrenia, ideally in a team approach. These include medication, psychotherapy, behavioral therapy, and social services, as well as employment and educational interventions.

Latest Mental Health News

Voices: Living with Schizophrenia | WebMD

In the 1990’s, new antipsychotic medications were developed. These new medications are called second generation, or “atypical” antipsychotics.

One of these medications, clozapine is an effective medication that treats psychotic symptoms, hallucinations, and breaks with reality. But clozapine can sometimes cause a serious problem called agranulocytosis, which is a loss of the white blood cells that help a person fight infection. People who take clozapine must get their white blood cell counts checked every week or two. This problem and the cost of blood tests make treatment with clozapine difficult for many people. But clozapine is potentially helpful for people who do not respond to other antipsychotic medications.

Other atypical antipsychotics were also developed. None cause agranulocytosis. Examples include:

Atypical antipsychotic medications can cause major weight gain and changes in a person’s metabolism. This may increase a person’s risk of getting diabetes and high cholesterol. A person’s weight, glucose levels, and lipid levels should be monitored regularly by a doctor while taking an atypical antipsychotic medication.

Typical antipsychotic medications can cause side effects related to physical movement, such as:

How are antipsychotics taken and how do people respond to them?

How do antipsychotics interact with other medications?

Psychosocial treatments

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Causes Of Schizoaffective Disorder

Scientists donât know the exact cause. Risk factors for schizoaffective disorder include:

  • Genetics: You may inherit a tendency to get features linked to schizoaffective disorder from your parents.
  • Brain chemistry and structure: If you have schizophrenia and mood disorders, you might have problems with brain circuits that manage mood and thinking. Schizophrenia is also tied to lower levels of dopamine, a brain chemical that also helps manage these tasks.
  • Environment: Some scientists think things like viral infections or highly stressful situations could play a part in getting schizoaffective disorder if youâre at risk for it. How that happens isnât clear.
  • Drug use: Taking mind-altering drugs.

Schizoaffective disorder usually begins in the late teen years or early adulthood, often between ages 16 and 30. It seems to happen slightly more often in women than in men. It’s rare in children.

Because schizoaffective disorder combines symptoms that reflect two mental illnesses, itâs easily confused with other psychotic or mood disorders. Some doctors may diagnose schizophrenia. Others may think itâs a mood disorder. As a result, itâs hard to know how many people actually have schizoaffective disorder. Itâs probably less common than either schizophrenia or mood disorders alone.

Does Schizophrenia Get Worse With Age

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I can understand how you are feeling at the moment as someone who has a family member with schizophrenia. My brother developed schizophrenia at around age nine, but was not diagnosed until he was 16 years old. By then he had become really sick. For the past eight years he has been unable to function in society and has been forcibly placed in a mental hospital on and off since that time. This is hard to watch and I felt like things would not get any better, as schizophrenia does not go away with age.

I think that you need to hold a hopeful attitude towards the disorder as telling people who have mentally ill family members that it is going to get worse is not helpful or true. There will be times when flare-ups occur and my brother becomes really ill again, but they eventually dissipate and he returns to normal. This is the way the disorder works. Studies have shown that flare ups lesson over the course of the disease, so as someone with a family member with the disorder and who works in the mental health field I would have to disagree about it getting worse. I have never seen this and adolescence seems to be as bad as it gets.

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What If I Am Not Happy With My Treatment

If you are not happy with your treatment you can:

  • talk to your doctor about your treatment options,
  • ask for a second opinion,
  • get an advocate to help you speak to your doctor,
  • contact Patient Advice and Liaison Service and see whether they can help, or
  • make a complaint.

There is more information about these options below.

Treatment options

You should first speak to your doctor about your treatment. Explain why you are not happy with it. You could ask what other treatments you could try.

Tell your doctor if there is a type of treatment that you would like to try. Doctors should listen to your preference. If you are not given this treatment, ask your doctor to explain why it is not suitable for you.

Second opinion

A second opinion means that you would like a different doctor to give their opinion about what treatment you should have. You can also ask for a second opinion if you disagree with your diagnosis.

You dont have a right to a second opinion. But your doctor should listen to your reason for wanting a second opinion.


An advocate is independent from the mental health service. They are free to use. They can be useful if you find it difficult to get your views heard.

There are different types of advocates available. Community advocates can support you to get a health professional to listen to your concerns. And help you to get the treatment that you would like.

The Patient Advice and Liaison Service


You can find out more about:

Causes And Risk Factors For Paranoid Schizophrenia

Like with other types of schizophrenia, the exact cause of paranoid schizophrenia is unclear. Some studies have shown that brain dysfunctions can contribute to the onset of schizophrenia, but why this brain dysfunction occurs is undetermined.

Environmental triggers have been speculated to contribute to the development of schizophrenia, too.

Furthermore, an imbalance of dopamine has also been found to contribute to schizophrenia. Even serotonin, another neurotransmitter, has been found to play a role in causing schizophrenia.

The researchers have identified some risk factors for the condition, including genetics, viral infections, fetal malnutrition, stress during early life, childhood abuse or trauma, parental age of conception, and drug abuse.

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Schizophrenia Brain: Impact Of Schizophrenia On The Brain

DiagnosisThe limbic system , schizophrenia and bipolar disorder have some overlapping symptoms and brainThe limbic system , executive functions and episodic memory are consistently found to be impaired, Limbic System, This brain area is mainly Basal Ganglia, 3/5/13), see, the thalamus , The parietal cortex is located just above the temple area by the ears its the part of the brain that makes sense of what we hear, the disorder involves multiple regions of the brain, may be impaired in patients with schizophrenia, It also plays a role in other psychiatric and movement disorders, InAs mentioned in an earlier post Seeing, and behaves, Research shows that people with schizophrenia may be more likely to have differences in the size of certain brain areas and in connections between brain areas, Close-up of brain scans, feels, but the environment may also play a role, Indeed,Schizophrenia is a serious mental illness that affects how a person thinks, brain-scan data set ever compiled, What part of the brain does schizophrenia affect, the thalamus , hearing, basal ganglia, Some of these brain differences may develop before birth.

How Do You Calm A Schizophrenic Episode

Topic OverviewDont argue. Use simple directions, if needed. Give the person enough personal space so that he or she does not feel trapped or surrounded. Call for help if you think anyone is in danger.Move the person away from the cause of the fear or from noise and activity, if possible.More items

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World War Ii And The Genesis Of Modern Psychopharmacology

The studies by Harrow were not randomized trials. Whether a patient took or didnt take antipsychotic medications was simply a personal choice such that in the long run, those that were able to remain off antipsychotic medications for 20 years were a self-selected group. This raises the very real possibility that the unmedicated group who were not cured of schizophrenia and continued to experience mild psychotic symptoms might have had a less malignant form of the illness such that medications were not absolutely necessary. And its still possible that if the unmedicated subjects had taken antipsychotic medications, they might have done even better than they did. Its also possible that if medicated subjects had not been on antipsychotics, they would have done even worse. But these possibilities were not tested in the studies.

And so, despite the ethical risk, what we really need to answer the question of whether patients with schizophrenia should stay on antipsychotic medications indefinitely is a randomized, controlled trial of antipsychotics in the long-term treatment of schizophrenia.

Perhaps well have to await a real randomized controlled trial to answer the question more clearly. But in the meantime, a balance viewpoint seems appropriate.


1. Steingard S. A psychiatrist thinks some patients are better off without antipsychotic drugs. The Washington Post, 12/6/2013.

What Cognitive Schizophrenia Symptoms Are Like

A Portrait of Schizophrenia – Jason

Someone with these symptoms may have trouble concentrating, focusing, taking in new information, and using that information. Their brain processes information more slowly, their memory declines, and they often have trouble reading and understanding social cues, Weinstein says. Though these symptoms can be made even worse by the brain âtrafficâ from positive symptoms, cognitive decline is a symptom all on its own, Margolis says.

âEven getting dressed was a very complicated process for me,â Collins says. âItâs like a traffic jam of information going in and out of your brain, so itâs like everything is always new, you donât remember the process.â

Dickson describes feeling like his brain was under constant assault. âMy analogy is if youâre playing a game of tackle football with some friends and the ball is coming to you, can you really do algebra in your head at that moment? I was a fairly smart guy, but when youâre sick with what I had, you really canât do a lot of deep intellectual thinking.â

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Tip : Get Involved In Treatment And Self

The earlier you catch schizophrenia and begin treatment with an experienced mental health professional, the better your chances of getting and staying well. So, if you suspect you or a loved one is exhibiting schizophrenia symptoms, seek help right away.

Successful schizophrenia treatment depends on a combination of factors. Medication alone is not enough. Its important to also educate yourself about the illness, communicate with your doctors and therapists, build a strong support system, take self-help measures, and stick to your treatment plan. Pursuing self-help strategies such as changing your diet, relieving stress, and seeking social support may not seem like effective tools to manage such a challenging disorder as schizophrenia, but they can have a profound effect on the frequency and severity of symptoms, improve the way you feel, and increase your self-esteem. And the more you help yourself, the less hopeless and helpless youll feel, and the more likely your doctor will be able to reduce your medication.

While schizophrenia treatment should be individualized to your specific needs, you should always have a voice in the treatment process and your needs and concerns should be respected. Treatment works best when you, your family, and your medical team all work together.

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