What is Schizophrenia?
Schizophrenia is a mental disorder characterized by significant alterations in perception, thoughts, mood, and behavior. Symptoms are described in terms of positive, negative, and cognitive symptoms. The positive symptoms of schizophrenia are the same for any psychosis and are sometimes referred to as psychotic symptoms. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schizophrenia
What are the phases of Schizophrenia?
The four stages or phases of schizophrenia can be labeled as:
- The Prodromal Stage
The prodromal phase indicates the period from when the first change in a person occurs until he or she develops full-blown psychosis. In other words, it’s the time measure leading up to the first apparent psychotic episode.
2. The Acute Stage
The active phase, also termed the acute phase, is identified by hallucinations, paranoid delusions, and extremely disorganized speech and behaviors. During this stage, patients resemble very obvious psychotic disorder. If left untreated, active psychotic symptoms can last for weeks or months. Signs may improve to the case where the patient must enter the hospital for acute care and treatment.
3. The Remission Stage
After the intense activity of the symptoms resides they are said to have gone into remission. The intensity and appearance of the symptoms may decrease drastically and some may disappear altogether. With treatment, they can be kept at bay for long periods of time and normal functioning can continue for the most part. If you’re reading this with a sense of hope, please do feel hope and hang in there.
4. The Relapse Stages
The relapse stage is just the reappearance of the symptoms back to an acute level. This can be avoided or at least the damage minimized by continuing to follow the treatment plan laid out for you by your doctor. You can also become familiar with the feelings and signs of an impending relapse or psychotic episode and speak to your doctor right away. There may be ways to keep it at bay medically.
Thoughts on the Stages of Schizophrenia
Continue with your medication plan, stay in counseling and therapy, join social support groups, and stay healthy in other ways. By doing this, the complications of schizophrenia can be held to a minimum.