Schizophrenia is one of the most persistent and disabling mental illnesses that leads to the loss of social functioning in affected individuals. Human intervention is strongly believed to be more effective than medical science in helping people with schizophrenia. Therefore, the role of a family with schizophrenia patient(s) is very imperative for speedy recovery from the illness. Tackling schizophrenia can no longer be a daunting task as long as families strictly adhere to their role and responsibilities. A liable family works together in planning treatment, supervises medication intake, and ensures social, financial, mutual and emotional support to the affected member.
Understand the illness better
At the first instance, family members should accept the facts of the illness that enables them to face difficult emotions including frustration, anger, fear, guilt and hopelessness. Understanding schizophrenia and its treatment permits families make informed decisions on how best to address the illness and handle setbacks. Creating a supportive and structured environment in the house is highly expected to keep the patient unstressed. Families should be patient enough with the pace of recovery, and be careful that they aren’t taking over. It is advised to avoid anger and distractions such as TV, Radio and light that harm, reduce continuous eye contact, and avoid touching the patient.
Action plans for families
Keeping an emergency plan ready helps families handle such an illness. The best emergency plan for a family member with schizophrenia should have a list of contact details of doctors, and therapists, address and contact number of the nearest psychiatric hospital. The closest family member should initiate to speak about illness during an examination for schizophrenia treatment. Patients should be encouraged continuously to continue with the treatment. It will be useful if the family can maintain a better record of symptoms, medications recommended and used, and the effects of treatment. The family members, with a complete understanding of the history of symptoms, may gauge better what to look for in the future.
In-house treatment for Schizophrenia
As a matter of priority, families should even identify some “early warning signs” of potential relapses such as changes in the sleep pattern or increased withdrawal. Thus, return of psychosis can definitely be detected and treatment can prevent a full-blown relapse. Above all, families should support and motivate the person with schizophrenia in making him or her confident about quicker recovery. A positive approach will be helpful and perhaps more effective in long-run than criticism. This is advisable to everyone who interacts with patients on a timely basis. Ensuring patients continue with treatment even after hospitalization is one of the major considerations for families with schizophrenia.
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