Treatment of Schizophrenia

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What is the Best Treatment of Schizophrenia?

Schizophrenia carries sometime specific and sometimes complicated and mixed symptoms. It makes the diagnoses very difficult. The diagnosis can only be made on the symptoms of schizophrenia. It is also necessary to know that what is schizophrenia in fact and what are its causes? Schizophrenia requires a long time treatment which may extend to life time treatment too. There are several methods to treat schizophrenia. We shall describe here the methods which are mostly used methods of treatment.

1. Medication
2. ECT- electroconvulsive therapy
3. Interference in Social-Psychology

This method includes

  • CBT – Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • ACT – Assertive community treatment
  • Training of Social abilities
  • Family psycho Training
  • Treatment of Substance abuse
  • Maintained Employment
1. Medications

Medication is the best known and most effective treatment of the schizophrenia. Schizophrenia is the case of psychotic symptoms like depression and schizoaffective disorder, so the doctors prescribe the medicines which help reduce or eliminate the psychotic symptoms. Following types of medication are found effective but must be used only an expert’s prescription.

  • Antidepressants – Escitalopram, Fluoxetine, Escitalopram, Sertraline, Citalopram and Paroxetine
  • Combined Antidepressants – Duloxetine and Bupropion Venlafaxine
  • Mood stabilizing Medicines – Carbamazepine Lithium, Lamotrigine and Divalproex
  • Antipsychotics (Second Generation) – Aripiprazole (Well Known Abilify), Risperidone, Lloperidone, Quetiapine, Ziprasidone, Paliperidone, Olanzapine, Asenapine and Lurasidone

The doctors may prescribe these medicines singularly, combined or mixed with other psychiatric medicines. It depends upon the nature and severity of the symptoms of schizophrenia. The mood stabilizing medicines commonly work slowly. Moreover they require monitoring of patient during medication as they have more side effects than other ones. The mood stabilizer medicines should also be avoided during pregnancy. The second generations antipsychotics show a fast effect and have proved a better treatment of schizophrenia. The medicines used to treat schizophrenia in adults are not necessarily used in the children for the same case.

Side Effects of Schizophrenia Medications

The medicines used for the treatment of schizophrenia may produce the following side effects.

  • Vigorously increased appetite
  • Increased sleeping
  • Dizziness
  • Increased blood lipid levels
  • Some hormones especially the prolactin hormone level may increase
  • Increased blood sugar
  • Weight gain
  • Awkward muscle jerks
  • Inflexibility or instability of muscles

For these side effects, the health care providers constantly monitor the effects of these medicines during treatment of schizophrenia. The most critical situation is pregnancy in this case. The schizophrenic medicines may cause physical or environmental damage to fetus and structural damage to the brain of the mother. So, during pregnancy, the medicinal treatment of schizophrenia needs a great care and a constant watching.

2. ECT- Electroconvulsive Therapy

The ECT has a stigmatized record and most of the health care providers mostly avoid this therapy. But in case when the recurrent medication is not showing good effects, the electroconvulsive therapy is an appropriate treatment of schizophrenia.

3. Interference in Social-Psychology

CBT – Cognitive behavioral therapy – This therapy interferes the social-interacting ways of the patient.

CBT helps the patient better deal with the other people. It makes him enable to interact with other people in approved manners. The CBT is a reasonable therapy for the treatment of schizophrenia and shows encouraging results. The people, who are active psychotics, show zero response to Cognitive behavioral therapy and cannot be easily treated with this method.

ACT – Assertive community treatment – In this treatment a team of specialist is made. The team may consist of the concerned doctors, nurses, psychiatrist, specialists and case manger. These members meet the patient at the community places instead of hospital or center. The community places include the patient’s favorite spots. In these meetings the members try to make the patient feel at home.

Training of Social abilities – In this treatment the patient is trained to handle the social settings. In first step the trainers make him learn how to deal with team members’ social situations. Then step by step he is trained to increase the ability to go through the general social situations.

Family psycho Training – In this method of treatment the family of the patient is taught about schizophrenia. They learn the symptoms, causes and facts about the disease. They also learn how to deal the schizophrenic family member. This treatment of schizophrenia helps reduce the intensity of schizophrenic causes and episodes. It also decreases the burden on both the patient and family by dealing the case wisely and accurately.

Treatment of Substance abuse – This treatment of schizophrenia simply includes the methods and techniques which are adopted for substance abuse management.

Maintained Employment – In this method the patient is treated with concern to his work place. He is trained to handle all the situations taking place in his office, work shop, center and whatever he works at. It makes him more professional, earner and practical. This treatment of schizophrenia helps reduce the symptoms and episodes of the disease.

The health care provider may select any, a few, many or all of these methods according to the symptoms and intensity of the disease. The treatment of schizophrenia may take several months and years and require patience, concentration and permanence.

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