Schizophrenia, commonly referred to as a mental illness, is in fact a neurological disorder. It can be compared to Alzheimer’s Disease and Parkinson’s Disease, as well as to other medical illnesses such a diabetes, cancer and arthritis.
It is not an emotional disease, nor a sign of personal weakness, or a personality flaw. Persons with schizophrenia cannot simply choose to avoid having their psychotic symptoms any more than an Alzheimer’s patient can choose to avoid losing her memory. The vast majority of people suffering from schizophrenia will definitely need an antipsychotic medication. Generally, this antipsychotic medication must be taken indefinitely, just as a person with type-1 diabetes will always need insulin or a person with hypertension must remain on the medication permanently.
There are additional strategies to treat symptoms of various brain disorders (such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, anxiety and depression) in addition to medication. Psychotherapy as well as diet and exercise can help improve physical health as well as the quality of life. Certain supplements such as Omega-3 fatty acids as well as NAC (N-Acetyl Cysteine) can also help reduce the inflammation and free radicals in the brain during acute psychotic episodes. Vitamin D is also important to take if the blood level is low.
In this video, various fallacies and myths of schizophrenia are debunked. Symptoms of schizophrenia are explained. Dysfunction in certain brain regions, such as the frontal lobe where planning and decision making originate, is discussed along with disruption in neurochemistry and neurotransmitters in the limbic system.