There are two types of symptoms majorly seen in schizophrenia i.e. positive and negative. The concept of positive and negative symptoms of mental health has been around for a quiet a while but was initially applied to schizophrenia in the 1970’s.
Why it is called positive symptoms, doesn’t it mean that they are good? No, here the individual may experience add- on changes to normal behaviour. Positive symptoms consist of hallucination such as hearing voice and delusion.
- Hallucinations: Here the individuals tend to feel, hear, smell, see things that are not real. Among them hearing voices (auditory hallucinations) are most common. Sometimes the individual misinterpret their self talk as coming from an external source. Visual hallucinations are also quiet common.
- Delusions: Delusions are strong false beliefs that the individuals have and they can be of any kind. The person may believe that their thoughts or actions are being controlled by some external forces. The person may also believe that they have super natural powers and they may feels that he/she is a famous personality.
- Disorganised thoughts and speech: Individuals with schizophrenia can experience difficultly in organizing thoughts. They are, easily distracted or unable to follow the given instructions. When they talk, their word does not make senses, they answer question irrelevantly. Speech is also affected: they make speak disorganized manner, their statements may consist meaningful but jumble words creates a word salad.
- Disorganised behaviour: The individual may faces issues with goal directed self care behaviour like poor personal hygiene, sudden impulsive and socially in appropriate behaviour may seen. For example, the individuals may wear a cotton shirt in winter, and they may wear odd or improper make up, or they may shout at others without reason etc.
- Disorganised movements: The individual may perform same movements again and again, but some time they may still and rigid in particular posture and they cannot move for hours or days.
Schizophrenia usually starts amid ages 16 and 30. It can affect commonly men than women.
Individual with schizophrenia need a collaborative treatment of medications, therapy, social support, life style modifications etc.