Page 191 - Faculty Handbook2

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Mental Health Concerns
191
How is schizophrenia treated?
While there is no cure for schizophrenia, it is a treatable and
manageable illness. However, people sometimes stop
treatment because of medication side effects, lack of insight,
disorganized thinking, or because they feel the medication is
no longer working. People with schizophrenia who stop
taking prescribed medication risk relapsing into an acute
psychotic episode. It’s important to realize that the needs of
the person with schizophrenia may change over time. Below
are examples of supports and interventions:
Hospitalization: Individuals who experience acute symptoms
of schizophrenia may require intensive treatment, including
hospitalization. Hospitalization is necessary to treat severe
delusions or hallucinations, serious suicidal thoughts, an
inability to care for oneself or severe problems with drugs or
alcohol. Hospitalization may be essential to protect people
from hurting themselves or others.
Medication: The primary medications for schizophrenia are
antipsychotics. Antipsychotics help relieve the positive
symptoms of schizophrenia by helping to correct an
imbalance in the chemicals that enable brain cells to
communicate with each other. As with drug treatments for
other illnesses, many patients with mental illnesses may
need to try several different antipsychotic medications
before they find the one, or the combination of medications,
that works best for them.