Paranoid Schizophrenia is a type of mental illness found in young adults. This is a common type of schizophrenia which includes having auditory hallucinations and delusions. This chronic disease can lead to serious mental instability, which can cause the person to attempt suicide. If the disease is treated early people with paranoid schizophrenia are able to lead a normal happy life.
The exact cause for this disease remains unknown. However, there are several factors which are considered to increase the risk of developing this disease which is listed below:
- Few people are born with enlarged brain ventricles which might cause paranoid schizophrenia. Few are also said to develop enlarged brain ventricles although the reason for this has not yet been found.
- This disease is thought to be genetic i.e. if a person in your family has suffered or is suffering from schizophrenia, then there is high probability that you might suffer from it too. However, half of the people who suffer from this disease have absolutely no family history of this disease.
- Consumptions of lethal and illegal drugs like cocaine, LSD, etc can also increase the risk of this disease.
- An infant suffering from viral infection might develop this disease
- A viral infection during pregnancy also increases the risk factor
- Environmental factor like stress might trigger the development of this disease
The most common symptoms related to this disease are delusions. This means that a person starts believing in false facts which his/her mind invents. For example: the person believes that someone is following him/her, or that he/she is a famous personality, etc. These things are false although the person with paranoid schizophrenia starts manipulating his/her life based on these false beliefs. Another common symptom is auditory hallucinations. The person hears voices which do not exist and starts reacting to them. The voices seem to lead the person’s life by commanding and ordering things to do.
Thus, people with this disease, reply to these voices and they seem to be talking to themselves. The hallucinations might not limit to hearing voices but the person might see people, and feel things which are not even present in reality. This might make the person vulnerable to attempt suicide, become highly aggressive, and violent.
Apart from these signs, people with this disease are also found murmuring things to themselves, interrupt a conversation, become suddenly blank and lost while talking. All these signs and symptoms also lead to disturbed personal relationships.
The symptoms of this disease are first distinguished by family members, close friends, and colleagues. A physician performs physical examination and a complete blood test. After tracking the family history and a questioning session with a psychiatric, an MRI and CT scan is performed. The most common thing which determines this type of schizophrenia is an attempt to harm oneself.
Treatment of this disease includes psychotherapy, Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), medications, and if necessary hospitalization. Family and friends support can help the patient to recover faster and give a positive response to the treatment. The psychiatrist first tries to figure out the extent of the illness and then suggests the further treatment. This is known as psychotherapy which helps the patient to adapt to social life as normally as possible.
The treatment further includes medications like anti depressants and antipsychotic. These are helpful for the patient to over come acute depression which raises the risk of suicide. These also help to suppress abnormal behavior symptoms and also suppress delusions and hallucinations. Another quicker way to ease the symptoms of this disease is by using Electroconvulsive therapy also known as ECT. Electric currents are used to suppress the symptoms. This treatment is given in multiple sessions over few weeks. When the patient becomes highly depressed or succumbs to violence, he/she needs to be hospitalized. This is to ensure that the patient gets necessary treatment under proper care of practitioners.
Apart from medications, people suffering from paranoid schizophrenia require good care. Neglecting this condition can worsen the symptoms of paranoid schizophrenia.