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What is schizophrenia?

A long-term mental disorder of a type involving a breakdown in the relation between thought, emotion, and behavior, leading to faulty perception, inappropriate actions and feelings, withdrawal from reality and personal relationships into fantasy and delusion, and a sense of mental fragmentation.

• A mentality or approach characterized by inconsistent or contradictory elements.

Theories About Schizophrenia

Genetic predisposition combined with an environmental exposures and / or stresses during pregnancy or childhood that contribute to, or trigger, the disorder.

  • Street drugs have been implicated as a trigger, including marijuana and cannibis.
  • This disease strikes young people between the ages of 15 and 25. Men tend to get develop schizophrenia slightly earlier than women; whereas most males become ill between 16 and 25 years old, most females develop symptoms several years later, and the incidence in women is noticably higher in women after age 30. The average age of onset is 18 in men and 25 in women. Schizophrenia onset is quite rare for people under 10 years of age, or over 40 years of age. 
  • Statistics vary, but the illness affects about 1% of the population. More than 2 million Americans suffer from schizophrenia at any given time, and 100,000-200,000 people are newly diagnosed every year. Fifty percent of people in hospital psychiatric care units have schizophrenia.

  • The hallmark of schizophrenia is an absence of insight: the patient does not accept that he/she is ill. As a result, it is usually the family which seeks psychiatric help for the patient
  • It is treatable. Early diagnosis and stabilization on medicines greatly improve the chance of recovery
What schizophrenia is not?
  • Schizophrenia is not "split personality"
  • It is not caused by childhood trauma or bad parenting
  • Most people with schizophrenia are not violent or dangerous

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Homeopathy Misinterpreted

Schizophrenia Linked To Wheat Consumption | Believe it or not, this question has been asked for well over 60 years by researchers who stumbled upon evidence that the removal of gluten from the diet results in improved symptoms, or conversely, that gluten grain consumption leads to higher prevalence of both neurological and psychiatric problems. 

Reports of the resolution of emotional disturbances after the institution of a “gluten free” diet exist in medical literature at least as far back as 1951.[i]  In 1954, Sleisenger reported to have found three schizophrenics among a group of thirty-two adults with celiac disease,[ii] and in 1957, Bossak, Wang and Aldersberg reported discovering 5 psychotic patients among 94 patients with celiac disease.[iii] 

Link Gluten Intolerance to Schizophrenia

Latest Schizophrenia Therapy Better Than Drugs

Research Findings ... "have already trickled out to government agencies: On Friday, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services published in its influential guidelines a strong endorsement of the combined-therapy approach. Mental health reform bills now being circulated in Congress “mention the study by name,” said Dr. Robert K. Heinssen, the director of services and intervention research at the National Institute of Mental Health, who oversaw the research.

In 2014, Congress awarded $25 million in block grants to the states to be set aside for early-intervention mental health programs. So far, 32 states have begun using those grants to fund combined-treatment services, Dr. Heinssen said.

Experts said the findings could help set a new standard of care in an area of medicine that many consider woefully inadequate: the management of so-called first episode psychosis, that first break with reality in which patients (usually people in their late teens or early 20s) become afraid and deeply suspicious. The sooner people started the combined treatment after that first episode, the better they did, the study found. The average time between the first episode and receiving medical care — for those who do get it — is currently about a year and half. 

The more holistic approach that the study tested is based in part on programs in Australia, Scandinavia and elsewhere that have improved patients’ lives in those countries for decades. This study is the first test of the approach in this country — in the “real world” as researchers described it, meaning delivered through the existing infrastructure, by community mental health centers.

The drugs used to treat schizophrenia, called antipsychotics, work extremely well for some people, eliminating psychosis with few side effects; but most who take them find that their bad effects, whether weight gain, extreme drowsiness, or emotional numbing, are hard to live with. Nearly three quarters of people prescribed medications for the disorder stop taking them within a year and a half, studies find.  “As for medications, I have had every side effect out there, from chills and shakes to lockjaw and lactation,” said a participant in the trial, Maggie, 20, who asked that her last name be omitted. She did well in the trial and is now attending nursing school.

Research: A variant gene can contribute to schizophrenia susceptibility. The team analyzed the genomes of more than 64,000 people and found that people with schizophrenia were more likely to have the overactive forms of C4-A than control subjects. 

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/01/28/health/schizophrenia-cause-synaptic-pruning-brain-psychiatry.html ;

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