Schizophrenia is an Axis-I psychological disorder that lasts for atleast 6 months with 1 month of active phase of symptoms. The common symptoms are :-

1) Delusions : There are false, unshakable beliefs that are out of proportion with the real, social, cultural, economical and educational background of the individual.

Delusions can be

a) Bizzare -> Not possible and understandable eg.

  • Thought withdrawal-> an external force is removing my thoughts
  • Thought insertion -> an external force is inserting thoughts in me
  • Delusion of control -> being controlled by external force

b) Non-Bizzare -> Possible and understandable – some eg.

  • Delusion of Grandiosity -> ‘I have exceptional power, abilities’, etc.
  • Delusion of infidelity -> ‘My partner is cheating me’
  • Referential delusions -> ‘They are talking about me’
  • Nihilistic delusions -> ‘Something bad will happen”
  • Delusion of poverty -> ‘I am very poor’
  • Delusion of Persecution -> ‘I am going to be harmed or harassed by some one’

2) Hallucinations : They are false perceptions in the absence of a stimuli. They can be –22V(1)-S

  • Olfactory -> related to smell
  • Tactile -> related to touch
  • Gustatory -> related to taste
  • Auditory -> related to hearing
  • Visual -> related to seeing

3) Disorganized thinking or speech : This can be in the form of –

  • Derailment or loose association -> Switching from one topic to another while talking
  • Tangentiality -> Giving unrelated answers to the questions
  • Neologism -> making new words
  • Word salad or incoherence -> mixture of words
  • Clang association -> using words that sound same but have different meaning22V(2)-S

4) Grossly Disorganized or abnormal motor behaviour including catatonia

5) Negative symptoms -> negative symptoms that are prominent in schizophrenia are :-

  • Diminished emotional expression
  • Avolition -> reduced self motivated Other negative symptoms are
  • Anhedonia -> reduced ability to feel pleasure
  • Asociality -> lack of interest in social interactions
  • Alogia -> reduced speech

6) Significantly low achievement and functioning on personal work front.

7) Improper self care

8) Sometimes the individual may lack insight or awareness of their disorder.

          Vidhi Pipara Adolescent Psychologist – Guidance on personal or psychological problems in Ahmedabad,Gujarat and India.

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