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Schizophrenia Experiences and Suggestions?

Cliff posted more than 10 years ago | from the dealing-with-an-illness-in-the-family dept.

Editorial 1128

Jagercola asks: "My sister was recently diagnosed with Schizophrenia. It's a chronic, severe, and disabling brain disease that we don't know a lot about. The movie, A Beautiful Mind, paints an accurate picture of how the disease affects someone in a best case scenario. I would like the vast audience here to help me understand the disease through experiences and that it might help me aid my sister. If you know someone how has the disease, how has it affected your and their life? How have you been able to cope with it? What are the long term implications for quality of life?"

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

FP (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216282)

FP yo!!

Asking for psychiatric advice on Slashdot? (1, Funny)

tweakt (325224) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216285)


Reminds me of: Lucy [snoopy.com]

--
PS: lameness filter sucks.

Re:Asking for psychiatric advice on Slashdot? (1, Informative)

Milo of Kroton (780850) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216401)

If you want to know more about it, try picking up a book or checking the Encyclopedia [wikipedia.org] . Slashdot isn't the best place to look for answers.

Re:Asking for psychiatric advice on Slashdot? (1, Funny)

JHromadka (88188) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216554)

Ironic that you are asking about schizophrenia in a place where people lambast each other for having different views about subjects like Linux, Apple, etc.

I understand... but WHY on slashdot? (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216291)

I understand you're trying to cope with this. I would feel for you if I knew you and I liked you. However, I have to ask: Why on Earth would you ask this question on slashdot? Go post do a search on groups.google.com and POST IN A NEWSGROUP OVER THERE.

Re:I understand... but WHY on slashdot? (5, Funny)

One Louder (595430) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216486)

Because, in addition to being legal experts and marketing geniuses, we're all also highly qualified psychologists and medical doctors.

Re:I understand... but WHY on slashdot? (3, Funny)

sunking2 (521698) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216503)

Because the people who keep chasing him threatened his life if he didn't get something posted on Slashdot.

how the fuck (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216298)

do slashdot web cookies know either of us have Schizophrenia?

Best case scenario??? (2, Interesting)

swfranklin (578324) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216304)

How do you mark an article submission as "Troll"? Beautiful Mind was not a terribly accurate film; it took a ton of non-realistic liberties for "artistic" sake. Also, it was (poorly) showing a relatively severe case of schizophrenia... Hardly a "best case" scenario.

Re:Best case scenario??? (2, Insightful)

Coneasfast (690509) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216398)

this isn't a "troll" , maybe 'beautiful mind' wasn't accurate, but the submitter is obviously unknowledgable on the topic, which is why he/she is asking.

please try and understand the difference between "not knowing" and "being a troll"

Re:Best case scenario??? (1)

Rakishi (759894) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216404)

Not to mention it took place back when there was a lot less information about the disease (electroshock therapy doesn't help with schizophrenia, it helps with depression though). Not to mention the late diagnosis of the disease in Nash. Today there are supposedly a decent number of treatments for the disease.

Re:Best case scenario??? (3, Informative)

sketchelement (725382) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216516)

The movie is a pile of poo, but Sylvia Nasar's book [amazon.com] is excellent.

IANAD?? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216313)

Uhm, how about you ask your fucking doctor instead of the idiots here?

Re:IANAD?? (-1, Offtopic)

david.gilbert (605443) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216480)

Have you been reading "How To Win Friends and Influence People" by any chance?

Slashdot? (2, Insightful)

kevlar (13509) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216314)

Slashdot already provides people with enough inaccurate Science and Technology information... lets not shoot for Medical as well...

Re:Slashdot? (1)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216496)

You forgot to mention the tons of legal advice from IANALs.

What would be really ironic (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216317)

is if Slashdot posts this again tomorrow. :P

Re:What would be really ironic (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216385)

I believe your thinking of Alzheimer's disease.

Re:What would be really ironic (1)

starnix (636547) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216541)

It would be even funnier if he posted this again tomorrow under a different name.

news for nerds (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216318)

I do sincerely wish you the best, but i have to say, Slashdot...news for nerds ???

it's my fault (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216321)

I've been secretly fucking your sister in the ass for quite some time. I think it finally broke her.

Re:it's my fault (-1, Offtopic)

Mechanik (104328) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216377)

quoth the parent: I've been secretly fucking your sister in the ass for quite some time. I think it finally broke her

Slashdot really needs a "+1 - I know I'm going straight to hell for this but I'm modding you Funny anyway"

Re:it's my fault (2, Funny)

Raul654 (453029) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216460)

Ah, you speak of that rarest of posts, the +5 troll

Hey (0, Offtopic)

SpaceCadetTrav (641261) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216327)

I'm not schizophraenic. Yes I am.

Re:Hey (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216384)

I am schizophraenic, and neither I am.

Twenty-one Ways to Be a Good Liberal (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216331)

1.) You have to believe that the AIDS virus is spread by a lack of federal
funding.
2.) You have to believe that the same teacher who can't teach 4th-graders
how to read is somehow qualified to teach those same kids about sex.
3.) You have to believe that guns in the hands of law-bidding Americans
are more of a threat than U.S. nuclear weapons technology in the hands of
Chinese and North Korean communists.
4.) You have to believe that there was no art before Federal funding.
5.) You have to believe that global temperatures are less affected by
cyclical documented changes in the earth's climate and more affected by
soccer moms driving SUV's.
6.) You have to believe that gender roles are artificial but being
homosexual is natural.
7.) You have to be against capital punishment, but support abortion on
demand.
8.) You have to believe that businesses create oppression and governments
create prosperity.
9.) You have to believe that hunters don't care about nature, but loony
activists who have never been outside of San Francisco do.
10.) You have to believe that self-esteem is more important than actually
doing something to earn it.
11.) You have to believe that the military, not corrupt politicians, start
wars.
12.) You have to believe the NRA is bad because it supports certain parts
of the Constitution, while the ACLU is good because it supports certain
parts of the Constitution.
13.) You have to believe that taxes are too low, but ATM fees are too high.
14.) You have to believe that Margaret Sanger and Gloria Steinem are more
important to American history than Mary Washington, Betsy Ross, the American
Pioneer Women, Eleanor Roosevelt, "Rosey the Riveter," and Rosa Parks.
15.) You have to believe that standardized tests are racist, but racial
quotas and set-asides are not.
16.) You have to believe that Hillary Clinton is normal and is a very nice
person.
17.) You have to believe that the only reason socialism hasn't worked
anywhere it's been tried is because the right people haven't been in charge.
18.) You have to believe conservatives telling the truth belong in jail,
but a liar and a sex offender belonged in the White House.
19.) You have to believe that homosexual parades displaying drag,
transvestites, and bestiality should be constitutionally protected, and
manger scenes at Christmas should be illegal.
20.) You have to believe that illegal Democratic Party funding by the
Chinese government is somehow in the best interest to the United States.
21.) You have to believe that this message is a part of a vast, right wing
conspiracy.

Re:Twenty-one Ways to Be a Good Liberal (0, Offtopic)

Ygorl (688307) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216435)

Wow... That's both off-topic and just about the biggest piece of crap I've read this month. Congratulations! I don't even know how I'd mod it...

Re:Twenty-one Ways to Be a Good Liberal (0, Offtopic)

ksyrium (593350) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216465)

1) WTF does this have to do with the topic?

2) For some stupid reason, I remember reading that the whole Betsy Ross thing is a myth. All she did, at most, was suggest how many points to put on the stars of our flag. Google "betsy ross myth" for more.

3) Hillary Clinton is certainly not normal, and I'm surprised you assume she's a person. Frankly...Stepford wife from hell?

Re:Twenty-one Ways to Be a Good Liberal (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216520)

Nice 5 year old cut-and-paste, it nicely illustrates the inability of Ditto-heads to understand the society they live in.

Just Remember... (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216332)

Too many people confuse Schizophrenia with Multiple Personality Disorder. The two are related, but are not the same thing.

Re:Just Remember... (2, Funny)

untaken_name (660789) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216437)

Too many people confuse Schizophrenia with Multiple Personality Disorder. The two are related, but are not the same thing.

I agree totally with you.

I, however, don't.

Question... (1)

icekillis (777986) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216335)

Are we implying that slashdot readers will have a higher number of schizophrenia symptoms? I would not expect the rate to be higher than... let's say car mechanics...

Do you post linux questions on WebMD? (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216336)

no, you don't.

Re:Do you post linux questions on WebMD? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216543)

I do!!! I've been told that there's very little development in the "Linux on the Pacemaker" department.

Re:Do you post linux questions on WebMD? (1)

AssFace (118098) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216558)

speak for yourself man - I post them there all of the time.

Schizophrenia Experiences and Suggestions? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216340)

Why are you asking the people of Slashdot this? Be realistic and ask a doctor.

Schizo... what? (1, Funny)

AnonymousTravis (775517) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216346)

That reminds me of the time I...

What? Who said that?

MAKE THE VOICES STOP!

It wouldn't be so bad if they would just stop yelling at me... ::Cries in the corner::

Remind yourself and your family (1)

GillBates0 (664202) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216347)

that life is a tiny drop in the vast ocean of space and time. Our lives, our petty problems, our worries are mere fleeting glimpses in the infinity of the universe.

Helps me put things in perspective when I'm depressed/sad/dejected. Maybe it'll help you too.

Re:Remind yourself and your family (1)

anon*127.0.0.1 (637224) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216513)

Strange, that just made me more depressed then ever.

Re:Remind yourself and your family (1)

hoggoth (414195) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216526)

> Remind yourself and your family that life is a tiny drop in the vast ocean of space and time. Our lives, our petty problems, our worries are mere fleeting glimpses in the infinity of the universe.
Helps me put things in perspective when I'm depressed/sad/dejected. Maybe it'll help you too.

Damn... now I'm really depressed.

If you consider that a pic-me-up, I'd hate to see what you consider depressing.

Which doesn't answer the actual question... (1)

MAXOMENOS (9802) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216548)

...which is, what can this man do to help his sister? Moral support is good and all, but moral support also comes from practical support.

Re:Remind yourself and your family (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216551)

Or just make 'em that much more depressed.

"I'm completely insignificant! Yay me!"

Schitzophrenia is great! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216348)

It's better than dying alone!
You can make new friends every day!
You can hide your own easter eggs!

k5 (5, Informative)

MrZaius (321037) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216355)

Go to Kuro5hin. [kuro5hin.org] There's a number of fascinating, lengthy, relevant articles on the subject there.

Re:k5 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216427)

Please mod the parent post UP as "informative"

Obligatory (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216356)

Wikipedia link to Schizophrenia [wikipedia.org]

(--A wikipedia admin)

News for Nerds. Stuff that matters. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216362)

Cliff you should be shot! What the hell are you doing? Let's stick to the sci-fi, tech news, and SCO bashing please.

Re:News for Nerds. Stuff that matters. (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216428)

I think Cliffs been watching "A Beautiful mind" too much.

They told him to post it....

Find out more (5, Informative)

nizo (81281) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216364)

You should certainly read more about it (sorry I have no books to recommend). My brother was diagnosed with schizophrenia when I was a kid; he eventually committed suicide when the doctor decided to reduce his medication (a little too quickly apparently). Also since there is a genetic component to schizophrenia, you might want to investigate early symptoms and keep an eye on your kids. This website [narsad.org] would probably be worth taking a look at too.

God be with you (4, Insightful)

Hiawatha (13285) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216368)

I'm sorry to hear of your trouble. I offer prayers for you and your sister.

Re:God be with you (-1, Troll)

flok (24996) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216463)

As if that helps.

Re:God be with you (0, Troll)

CrosseyedPainless (27978) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216550)

*You* really read Slashdot?

A Beautiful Mind... (3, Interesting)

david.gilbert (605443) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216373)

That was an excellent movie, but I wouldn't go so far as to call it an "accurate picture". I also read the book and I don't know if I'd describe Nash's experience as a "best case scenario" - maybe it is, for that particular disease, but it didn't sound too good to me.

Re:A Beautiful Mind... (3, Informative)

Kenja (541830) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216544)

A Beautiful Mind is less accurate then Perfect Blue [imdb.com] or Paranoia Agent [animenewsnetwork.com] . Dont know why but Susumu Hirasawa does a very good (if some what chilling) depiction of schizophrenia.

no confrontation (1, Informative)

Tomahawk (1343) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216383)

The only think I know about dealing with someone with Schizophrenia is to never confront them.

If you are talking to them, don't sit or stand opposite them, but beside them.

Try not to disagree with them about this, or if you do, don't do it negatively.

People with Schizophrenia can very easily turn away from you, cut you off, and want to have nothing to do with you.

I don't have any experience here, but this is from something my sister told me (she was a phsychologist, so I can only assume she knew what she was talking about).

T.

"Schizophrenia" was a catch-all. (1)

rdmiller3 (29465) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216388)

Be careful who you listen to about "schizophrenia", especially as to exactly what they think schizophrenia is, because there seem to be some vastly different modern diagnoses which have a little foot-note in their definitions like, "once considered a form of schizophrenia."

It's a vague term at best, and you should try to find out more about the specific form you're dealing with.

Sorry for not being supportive, but .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216390)

Yeah, way to bring me down man. The net must crawl with sites and groups focused on this kind of thing, I want to read about half life 2 or what jerks SCO is or something, not play geek psychiatrist.

hate to say it but........ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216391)

what does this have to do with "news for nerds"?

Look to your local organizations (4, Informative)

affsol (576807) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216397)

Try www.nami.org to start. It is an orginaztion for both family, friends and consumers. Also your local state office of Mental Illness can help get you resources. Mental Illnes is nothing to be embarressed about, it is a physical disease like any other disease.

Take the medication (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216400)

A friend of mine in college was schizophrenic. He was fine as long as he took his meds and in fact I knew him about 6 months before I even knew he had the disease. Two problems. First, he occasionally liked to smoke pot and that seemed to interfere with his medication. Second, one of his symptoms was paranoia so if he missed a couple of doses (or smoked too much) he would start thinking the medicine was just there to control his mind, and he'd quit taking it - then would begin a weeks-long slide that would end with him becoming homeless and getting arrested for assault or vandalism. He would get violent so they would institutionalize him for a while and he would recover in a few weeks and get released, able to function normally again. If only I could have got him to quit smoking pot he could have held down a job and finished college. Last I heard he had moved back in with his parents and was doing fine because they made sure he took his meds.

Re:Take the medication (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216524)

he would start thinking the medicine was just there to control his mind


I'd say:

Dude, you're -schizophrenic-, OF COURSE they're there to control your mind...

Close family member had it (3, Insightful)

alen (225700) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216405)

He thought everyone was out to get him. In the end he was diagnosed with cancer and refused all treatment because he thought it was a plot against him. He sued several government agencies because he thought they were after him.

Best treatment is drugs which seemed to help somewhat. As far as coping watch what you say around the person.

Ask a doctor? (1)

happyfrogcow (708359) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216408)

Have you talked to a doctor yet? sure it's nice to know other peoples personal experiences, but doctors are a good source.

if you have, then ignore this.

Kuro5hin (4, Interesting)

arvindn (542080) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216409)

There have been many stories on Kuro5hin [kuro5hin.org] by people with mental disorders. Take a look at Living With Schizophrenia [kuro5hin.org] . More recent, but not very relevant to the question is Living with Asperger's Syndrome [kuro5hin.org] , also a fascinating read.

Depends on the severity, I guess... (2, Interesting)

JAD lifter (778578) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216412)

I knew a girl who had schizophrenia. As long as she took her medication she was pretty much indistinguishable from everyone else.

One time we were all taking a long ride in a car. Just having the usual conversations that people have. She totally flipped out. In her mind, she thought that everyone in the car was talking about her, saying that she was ugly, stupid, a slut, whatever. She was having some major auditory hallucinations or something. But that was the only time that I ever saw her do anything strange.

The above incident is what prompted her to tell all of us about her schizophrenia. If it wasn't for that I never would have even known that she was schizophrenic and I had been hanging out with this girl at least twice a week for over a year.

Work hard, become rich (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216414)

Schizophrenia treatment has advanced by leaps and bounds since the days of John Nash's disease, so don't consider that a "best case scenario" for anything but the 60s-90s. Realize that the main barrier to effective treatment is cost - the "worst case" scenarios are the poor and lower economic classes. The destitute and lonely. Those without support, they who cannot afford the best care.

Therefore, unless your family is already wealthy, it is up to you and the other able members who are willing to provide for your sister to create and pool wealth to use for this purpose. Some families are not willing to do this, or are only willing to contribute enough to ensure basic care. To ensure the best possible outcome, ideally you and your able family members must adopt a completely altruistic stance regarding medical care for your sister, and work hard to the end of improving her condition as best it can be improved.

Come on, the answer is easy! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216420)

Google [google.com] be yo friend foo.

Meds, Meds, Meds. (5, Informative)

dameron (307970) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216430)

All this depends on the severity and type of schizophrenia she has, and this advice only comes second hand, but:

It may take a long time for your sister's doctors to find the right combination of drugs and dosages to best manage her symptoms, but there is hope that eventually she can live a reasonably normal life.

However, it is very dangerous and sadly common that once her therapy starts working she'll feel so much better she may stop taking her meds, relapse, get remedicated, feel better, stop taking the meds, relapse and so on.

Good luck to both of you,

-dameron

Close friend. (1)

Grey Dragon (13628) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216432)

I had a very close frind diagnosed with it. Unfortunatly she decided to dissapear and the next time I saw her was in a casket after she dived off the third floor of a down town parkade and killed herself. I miss my friend dearly.

Support in taking meds (4, Informative)

invid (163714) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216439)

I used to volunteer on at a schizophrenia ward at a psychiatric hospital when I studied psychology. People would be admitted, get put on meds, stay for awhile until the meds took effect, and then go back out on their own. Once on their own many would think they were 'cured' and stop taking their meds. Then they would have another episode and end up back at the hospital. So my advice is to support her in taking meds. The right type and dose of medication is crucial to a good quality of life. It may take awhile for the doctors to get that right, and it is important to support her while they try.

Higher rate of mental illness (1)

caston (711568) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216440)

I read about a survery once although I can't remember where ( quite possibly on here though!), that showed that people in IT have a higher rate of mental illness than the general population.

I'm not going to put forward any ideas as to why this could be but I'm sure many of us have a few suspicions.

Some thoughts (0)

The12thRonin (749384) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216441)

I once dated a girl who had this as well. She was in a phase where she was aware of the other personalities and could deal with them. I did alot of reading on the subject and here's some things I learned.

The alternate personalities are formed for several reasons, mainly to deal with a certain kind of stress. If they are having problems standing up to something, a different personality can form that will be a "guardian". Others will be formed to help deal with a problem that the main personality can't deal with (aka "It happens to them, not me").

The switches are caused by some kind of a trigger. The trick is to figure out what that trigger is and then your sister and those close have to learn to deal with that.

Now, you can run into some serious problems when the alts start to become aware of each other. Some of the alts can be so strong that they subvert the main personality of your sister. Once this happens, you need to get her professional help. Bad(tm) things can happen at this point, including self-inflicted wounds as the personalities start fighting for control.

Unfortunately, I don't remember the names of the books I read on this, but Amazon and Google were the main places I went for information on how to support her. All I can say is good luck to you and her.

that was MPD, not schizophrenia (1)

ChipMonk (711367) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216519)

Multiple personality disorder is a distinct illness.

Depends (1)

The Tyro (247333) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216443)

on what type of schizophrenia she has... there's paranoid, disorganized, catatonic, etc. Prognosis varies depending on subtype.

Also, does she have chronic schizophrenia, or a reactive form? The reactive form (usually a psychotic "break" in response to some illness or crisis) is much more treatable, and has a better prognosis.

There's a wide spectrum of schizophrenic severity... some people respond to lower-dose older meds, some only to the newer antipsychotic drugs... some don't respond at all.

More info, please.

Not much known about Schizophrenia (1)

Thaidog (235587) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216444)

Some think that Schizophrenia is actually a virus that the brian catches. Noticable symptoms include the hollowing out of the brain cavities... This symptom in particular is evidence for it being a virus. Other symptoms include scattered thought and paranoia.


Psychology is a grey area in my opinion with a long history of extremely bad practices... like psychotherapy with LSD... good one doctor.

some advice (1)

asuzuki (305049) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216446)

Can't offer you any real help, but maybe you should consider

a) consulting an expert in that field
b) not relating your sister's experience with some Hollywood movie (which is far from accurate by the way).

Great movie! (0, Troll)

openSoar (89599) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216450)

I loved that Russell Crowe movie - his name was Maximus though - Schizophrenia was his cousin I think.

My family has a history of mild schizophrenia (4, Insightful)

Ayaress (662020) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216452)

My uncle particularly managed to live with it quite well. He went to special schools when he was growing up. I don't know what they did, but apparantly they have special teaching techniques that could give him employable skills. I remember my psychology professor talking about how experiments have been done like teaching autistic children to perform fairly complex tasks through repetitive conditioning, rather than traditional teaching. It could be something like that. He certainly didn't get a full education (no science or history, minimal math, basically enough English to read the newspaper)

Between medicine and education, he's managed to make a decent living as an electrician. They recently put him on a new set of medications, and he seems perfectly normal to talk to now.

A beautiful mind (1)

Threni (635302) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216457)

I wouldn't base your knowledge of anything on a Hollywood movie, for christs sake! (Didn't Hollywood have the Americans cracking the Enigma code? Sounds bizarre but it's what a friend who saw the film told me!)
Generally Schizophrenia is treated as either a joke, or as multiple personality disorder, for some reason.

There are plenty of resources on the net with information about schizophrenia. There are some forms of medication which can help but we're still in the dark ages when it comes to the treatment of mental health, so expert little more than fear from friends and family, and chemical lobotomy's from the medical profession. The cause will be described as being anything from genetics/hereditary problems to drug use, pregnancy, shock, the stress of modern living, viruses, your mother having flu during pregnancy etc etc. Ultimately someone suffering from it is going to need help to get over it, if they ever do. Good luck.

Schizophrenia (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216466)

Actually, I vastly don't appreciate some of the jokes flying around. I was diagnosed schizophrenic about 6 years ago.

It's a major life change for all involved... (1)

TopShelf (92521) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216469)

One thing to do right away is to get realistic about what drug therapies are likely to do. Even if a particular drug seems like it's working, often they lose their efficacy over the course of time and something else must be tried, which can result in relapses and other complications. My wife's aunt is schizophrenic, and there are good times and bad.

One key is to keep treating that person with respect and dignity, even though sometimes it is hard due to the nature of their illness. Good luck.

Definitions (1)

Tomahawk (1343) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216471)

schizophrenia P Pronunciation Key (skts-frn-, -frn-)
n.
Any of a group of psychotic disorders usually characterized by withdrawal from reality, illogical patterns of thinking, delusions, and hallucinations, and accompanied in varying degrees by other emotional, behavioral, or intellectual disturbances. Schizophrenia is associated with dopamine imbalances in the brain and defects of the frontal lobe and is caused by genetic, other biological, and psychosocial factors.
A situation or condition that results from the coexistence of disparate or antagonistic qualities, identities, or activities: the national schizophrenia that results from carrying out an unpopular war.

Schizophrenia

n : any of several psychotic disorders characterized by distortions of reality and disturbances of thought and language and withdrawal from social contact [syn: schizophrenic disorder, schizophrenic psychosis, dementia praecox]

from www.dictionary.com

T.

This is like asking for cunnilingus tips (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216472)

I mean really. Couldn't you think of a more appropriate forum?

Just trying to be helpful

Ok, let me relay what I currently deal with (4, Informative)

linzeal (197905) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216473)

I've had a good friend up here who recently turned 21 and was diagnosed with schizophrenia. He really is not the same person I knew even a short 2 years ago, and I don't really miss the old person so much as wish I could know the new person better. He is secretive about his hallucinations until he gets messed up on speed or really really drunk than he goes haywire and his parents have had to call the police 2 times to remove him. They changed the locks recently too, because he would come in and just sit there in the middle of the night on the couch while everyone else was asleep listening for the boogie men. He really loves his family and thinks he is protecting himself and them from unseen forces, but in reality he is just freaking everyone out. The amount of speed this poor boy did in his life time has increased the likliehood of schizophrenia and since he is an addict and does not take his psych meds in a regular manner the periods of normalacy in his life are becoming grim caricutures of himself. Like he is reanimating a dead person when he speaks of himself without the diseaese. He does not believe he will ever be well again.

I drive this cat around town about once to twice a week to the doctor or to pick up his SSI check. Since he has been living on his own in a little rent control apartment he has been doing moderately better, but I think it would be best if he would also go back to college and finish his psychology degree (only has a year left). He knows better than anyone amongst his family and friends what the disease is but still thinks he is special that his demons are real, it is very sad. I wish they could cure things like this, but barring a wholesale revolution in the way we treat mental diseases that will not happen.

Kuro5hin.org (1)

akarnid (591191) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216474)

Hmm at first í thought I had loaded kuro5hin.org up instead of /. I'd recommend you to go over there and search for a submitted article on this very same subject. It received a few hundred replies, many of the extremely helpful. I should know, I work in mental health care myself.

a screenplay by james cameron (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216485)

a crouded room [hundland.com] was cleverly presented, and is based on a true story.

the method of rationalizing opposing personalities fighting for top spot was the best ive yet seen.

Suggested Reading (1)

JSkills (69686) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216491)

You've got to read The Eden Express [amazon.com] , by Mark Vonnegut (Kurt's son). It's an incredible true story of an intelligent man who rises from the depths of a debilitating condition.

Compliance is the issue (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216497)

The prognosis will depend on the reponse of the illness to pharamceutical intervention. One of the big problems with this is the side-effect profile. Olanzapine (one of the more recent antipsychotics) has a varying risk of weight gain due it causing increase in appetite. This leads to a lot of people discontinuing when symptoms resolve.

Think of it like antibiotics - the main symptoms can resolve in 3-4 days but you need to be on them for 10-14 days. With schizophrenia, symps can take 2-3 months to resolve to varying degrees (again it depends on the psychopathology) but maintenance of remission for up to a year or more is necessary. The main risk of non-compliance is relapse; every time this happens you can figure that her psychopharmacological profile is altered and it becomes harder and harder to treat.

Good prognosis would be faster resolution and first episode, response to 1 antipsychotic and positive symptoms (by this I mean: things that are abnormal by their presence such as hallucinations or referential ideas) instead of negative symptoms (by this I mean things that are abnormal by their absence, resulting in affect blunting or flattening, paucity of speech or content of speech or social withdrawal and isolation).

Risk of relapse with even good compliance is high. Risk of relapse with poor compliance is ver very high. Risk of substance abuse is high (alcohol in 50%, general narcotics such as cannabis in 10-20%).

Best thing you can do for your sister is 1) make sure she continues with treatment, 2) make sure she brings up any side-effects like mentioned above or extrapyramidal ones seen more in older meds like haloperidol and 3) attends a support group because INSIGHT IS EVERYTHING.

I think this may be early in the posts and undoubedtly there are the people who think psychiatry is One Flew Over The Cuckoos Nest. Schizophrenia is a collection of symptoms that can vary to an immense degree across a spectrum of severities. It is not Raising Cain.

New Variation (1, Offtopic)

cyranoVR (518628) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216506)

One recently discovered variation of schizophrenia causes the sufferer to experience bizarre delusions of property-ownership, as well as the paranoid belief that an international conglomerate of shadow agents - and their masses of followers - are trying to steal aforementioned property and subvert the sufferer's day-to-day life.

Doctors are starting to refer to it as "McBride Disorder."

Keep her away from weed and other drugs (1)

jaylen (59655) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216511)

My kid brother had a mild version of it - he went on drugs and had counciling for about 9 months. He is now fine, living a normal life with a girlfriend, car, and all the other consumer goods, etc.

One thing I *cannot* stress highly enough, keep your sister away from cannabis or other drugs as best as possible - and by other drugs I include coffee, chocolate, alcohol, etc.

Once my brother (who for a while, was as nutty as a fruitcake) stopped smoking weed, drinking 5 cups of coffee a day, and started exercise/medication he was much much better.

Don't lose hope, this condition is NOT always a life sentence.

I would respond (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216517)

but Cowboyneal is sitting over in my easy chair, with CmdrTaco and Bill Gates, and they are telling me not to.

YOU ARE VERY BRAVE..... (1)

greymond (539980) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216521)

"I would like the vast audience here to help me understand the disease through experiences and that it might help me aid my sister"

Um yeah I guarantee 80% of all the posts will be some jackass making fun of you/your sister or the disorder in general....GO INTERNET.

Strange (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216523)

I asked slashdot for ideas on how to create a portable server room, that got rejected, but suddenly, hey, WebMD slashdot edition.

I guess I forgot to ask medical advice with my computer question.

Ask Slashdot:

A friend of mine had the clap, which linux distro should she use?

Dealing with it myself (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216535)

Having recently been diagnosed with a highly functional (mild) version of the disease I can say first-hand that it is frightening for the victim and their friends and family. Although "A Beautiful Mind" has been derided for being unrealistic, it is actually very close to my own experiences. Believing parts of your life are real only to find out that they were not is a terrible thing. Most people with this disease are not nearly as lucky as I have been, they can't function correctly in the real world and it often gets worse. My family and I have dealt with the situation by allowing ourselves to go through the normal stages of grief - denial, anger, acceptance, etc. One thing that I would encourage anyone dealing with a family member having this problem to do is to accept your fears. Accept the anger and the disappointment, don't try to act like everything is ok and don't avoid it. That will only prolong the emotional distress. The other thing that I would say is that being supportive is essential. Someone with a more "average" case will be difficult to be around at times but showing your love for them means trying to help them. Finally, get multiple opinions on a course of treatment. DON'T TRUST THE FIRST DOCTOR'S OPINION! There are many different treatment options today, and many different drugs that can help. The wrong drug or the wrong dose of the right drug can make the situation much worse for everyone involved. Make sure whatever course of treatment is chosen is followed religiously. The drugs used often make the patient feel worse than the symptoms they treat and it's almost certain that they will eventually try to stop the meds which can have disastrous consequences as the withdrawl copuled with the resumption of symptoms is devastating. Basically, hang in there, do your research and help keep your family member on their treatment plan. Good luck.

Steel Yourself for Responses Here (4, Insightful)

Linus Sixpack (709619) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216545)

My sympathies for your sisters condition. About the only thing I can think of saying is treasure the best times more than the bad times. Remember that even in outbursts you hate or cant understand she is suffering too.

I would take any response you get here with a grain of salt and a suit of armor. Some of it will be geeky resentment at the topic not mentioning an operating system and some will be complete lack of empathy or experience.

Find a newsgroup or a circle of people confronting this illness. Its not well uderstood so its even harder to explain.

There is a schizophrenia.com that looks to have a bunch of stuff to start.

http://www.schizophrenia.com/

ls

She is possessed by satanic demons! torture helps. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216549)

For hundreds of years the muslims and christians have wisely known that she is actually afflicted by demons.

Therefore you must torture her and cast her out of the village.

After all WWJD?

shes a witch!

"Operators and Things" (1)

dpbsmith (263124) | more than 10 years ago | (#9216553)

Only published in paper and long out of print--but available from second-hand booksellers such as abebooks [abebooks.com] --you may want to read Barbara O'Brien's haunting book "Operators and Things." This 1958 book was written by a spontaneously-recovered schizophrenic and is a first-person view of the schizophrenic experience.

The title refers to her delusional revelation that what seems to be human beings in the world are actually two different kinds of beings, Operators and Things, and that she is a Thing.

Keep her away from pot.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#9216557)

A brother of a friend of mine developed schitzofrenia, He was fine for a couple of years, then started smoking pot.
He went down hill rapidly, and eventually threw himself infront of a train. One of the last things he said to my friend was, 'stay away from pot'.
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