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Schizophrenia: The Effects Of A Devastating Disease Essay


Schizophrenia is a severe brain disorder that affects 1% of the population or 24 million people worldwide. It is one the most debilitating and mentally devastating illnesses known, causing the patient to have abnormal behavior and failure to differentiate what is real from what is not. It is caused by combination of factors and treatment includes antipsychotic medications and counseling. This disease affects not only the patient but also the ones that care for them as they witness the deterioration of the person’s state of mind, for that reason its is important to create a good social support system to assist and encourage the person with Schizophrenia on the road to recovery.

Use as many key words as possible in your abstract. Limit its length to 960 characters. For an empirical study, use 100 to 120 words to describe the problem, participants, method, findings, and conclusions. For a theoretical or review article, use 75 to 100 words to state the article’s topic, thesis, scope, sources, and conclusions. Define all abbreviations and unique terms. Spell out names of tests and drugs; use generic drug names. Use paraphrases, not quotations. Conserve space by using abbreviations; express numbers as digits.

There is not much literature or evidence of Schizophrenia prior to the 19th Century. The first detailed report in the history of this disease was the case of James Tilly Matthews in 1797 documented by Phillipe Pinel and published in 1809. Pinel was a pioneer in the classification of mental disorders who made important contributions to Psychiatry. Heinrich Schule first referred to the disease as Dementia Praecox in 1886, and then in 1891 Arnold Pick reported a psychotic case as Hebephrenia. The name Schizophrenia, which means, “split of the mind” (Wikipedia, 2014), was introduced by Swiss psychologist Eugen Bleuler in 1908 describing the disease as a “separation of function between personality, thinking, memory and perception” (Wikipedia, 2014). Schizophrenia is caused by different factors. Genetics play an important role as people with family affected by the disorder are at a higher risk to develop Schizophrenia.

Environmental circumstances such as pregnant women that had been exposed to a virus like influenza or rubella “have children who are most likely to become schizophrenic” (Coon & Mitterer, 2013). Another hypothesis is brain chemistry imbalance, which states that higher levels of dopamine, a chemical that transmits signal in the brain, can cause the disease (Schizophrenia. All Psych Online, 2011). As of today scientists continue research to “understand the causes of the disorder and how it can be predicted and prevented” (Schizophrenia. National Institute of Mental Health, 2009).

Because this is a psychotic disorder that changes the perception of ones reality, which also affects the interpersonal relationships of the person, it is very important to understand the disease and the symptoms associated with it. The patient experiences an onset of symptoms including acute psychosis, paranoia, fear, hallucinations, anger, delusions and disorganized speech and behavior (Coon & Mitterer, 2013). Due to the variety of symptoms Schizophrenia appears as a group of disorders with four subtypes (Coon & Mitterer, 2013), these are:


Patients with Disorganized Schizophrenia have strange or silly behaviors and speech patterns, they show inappropriate emotions and have difficulties completing daily activities such as grooming and eating (Coon & Mitterer, 2013). Catatonic Schizophrenia is manifested in a different way as the patient can be in the same position for hours, as if it was in chock, without talking, moving or responding. It is mostly presented with a dramatic reduction of activity (Coon & Mitterer, 2013). Paranoid Schizophrenia is the most common subtype of the disease (Coon & Mitterer, 2013). The patients experience anxiety and false ideas usually accompanied by hallucinations that others are plotting against them. They tend to spend hours looking for ways to protect themselves. Paranoid schizophrenics are at risk for suicidal or violent behavior influenced by their delusions and or hallucinations (Schizophrenia. National Institute of Mental Health, 2009).

Undifferentiated Schizophrenia patients have characteristics of Schizophrenia but do not fall within any of the other specific categories or subtypes (Coon & Mitterer, 2013). Since the specific cause of Schizophrenia is unknown, Doctors focus on eliminating or alleviating the symptoms. The treatment is based on the use of antipsychotic medication, which can help the symptoms go away within days. Psychological treatment can help patients deal with the challenges of the illness such as daily living and social interaction (Schizophrenia. All Psych Online, 2011). Family therapy is also recommended and has proven to have positive results, as the family learns and understands the disease and how to help in the patient’s progress. The family’s attitude towards the patient is essential, avoiding unnecessary stress to the patient and participating in family therapy can strengthen the family’s ability to cope with the stresses caused by the disease.

Families can also benefit from group therapy and seek the help of organizations created to help people with the disorder and their relatives (Schizophrenia. National Institute of Mental Health, 2009). Having a relative with Schizophrenia can be extremely difficult and tiring, as the family struggles with anger, frustration and mixed emotions, but in order to successfully deal with Schizophrenia and help the patient, the family must first accept the disease. It is very important that the family understands how distressing, debilitating and challenging this disease is for the patient itself in order to provide the support system.

Families have been hurt and broken due to Schizophrenia but knowledge and proper education can make a difference in a patient’s life as isolating the patient will not help them realize when they are hurting their love ones, it is support what helps them find the right treatment and cope with the symptoms. Schizophrenia can destroy a person’s life, family and future, resulting in a decrease of life expectancy (Wikipedia, 2014), but with treatment and support, the affected person can have a positive outcome and live a satisfying live. It is devastating to see a family member’s life washed away by this disease and not contribute to help them regain their life back. Family acceptance and education is one of the most important aspects of a Schizophrenic patient’s road to recovery. Getting educated on the disease solidifies the foundation for a strong family and provides the support for the one in need.

This template contains pre-settings for the essential features of APA format: margins, indentations, font, line spacing, and widow/orphan control, as explained in The Research Process (pp. 160, 196-97). To use this template, select “File–Save As” and save the template under a new name. Then use type-over insertions to replace the header, information block, and title. Finally, replace the text in the body of the template by using type-over insertions, or delete the body text in blocks. (Hint: Leave the sample block quotation in place to preserve its paragraph indentation as a model. Use type-over insertions in the bibliography to preserve the hanging indentations.) Here, then, is a sample block quotation: A quotation that occupies more than four typed lines should be indented five spaces from the left margin. In a student paper, a block quotation may be single or double spaced, without quotation marks at the beginning and end of the quoted material. Its right margin should be set at 1″. Its parenthetical citation should be placed after the block’s last item of punctuation. (Smith, 1988, p. 16)

I suggest printing this template to make sure that your printer is properly configured to produce an APA page. It should produce no more than 27 lines per page, plus the header. The text block should be surrounded by 1″ margins on all four sides. Each page should have a manuscript page header, not to be confused with the “running head” described in the APA Publication Manual (sec. 5.15).


Coon, D., Mitterer, JO. (2013). Introduction to Psychology Gateways to Mind and Behaviour 13e. Beltmont: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning. National Institutes of Health. (2009). Schizophrenia. US Department of Health and
Human Services. Retrieved from: http://www.nimh.nih.gov/health/publications/schizophrenia-easy-to-read/nimh-schizophrenia-quadfold.pdf Schizophrenia. (2014). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Schizophrenia Psychology Information Online. (2014). Schizophrenia. Retrieved from http://psychologyinfo.com/schizophrenia/ All Psych Online (2009, November 29). Schizophrenia. Retrieved from http://allpsych.com/disorders/psychotic/schizophrenia.html.

Doe, J. Q. (1999, 12 August). Title of an article. Title of a Magazine, 212, 23. Doe, J. R. (1987). Title of an article. Title of a Scholarly Journal, 35, 112-128. Lastname, F. (1998). Title of a sample book. City: Publisher. Maner, M. (1999, 14 April). Women and eighteenth-century literature. Retrieved August 9, 1999 from the World Wide Web: http://www.wright.edu/~martin.maner/18cwom99.html

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