How to communicate with someone with schizophrenia? How schizophrenia affects others and what not to say to someone with schizophrenia? Would you like to find out how to help someone with schizophrenia? Let us tell you everything you need to know to start caring for someone with mental illness, keeping them calm and safe.
Today we are tackling precisely this difficult and rarely discussed topic, so without further ado, let us begin. What is schizophrenia?
Schizophrenia – what is it?
The risk of developing this mental illness amounts to about 1% and it affects men and women alike. Schizophrenia is a disease of the young, as half of all cases are reported before the age of 30.
The word schizophrenia is derived from the Greek words schizein, meaning to cleave and phren that translates into the term “mind”. It refers to the split between what the sick person thinks, does and feels. More often than not, schizophrenia manifests itself in a maladjustment of feelings and behaviour. This results in a dysfunctional and disintegrated personality of the person. The person with schizophrenia is unable to critically and realistically assess their own persona, surroundings and contacts with other people. The sick person unconsciously escapes from the outside world and moves away from people who were previously close to them.
In one part of the brain of schizophrenics, there is an excess secretion of dopamine, while other areas of the brain lack this neurotransmitter. The overproduction of dopamine significantly interferes with the perception of stimuli from the outside world.
- social withdrawal – the patient becomes interested only in their inner feelings, lives their own ideas, isolates themselves from loved ones, becomes incomprehensible to those around them,
- ambivalence – heterogeneity of experiencing, thinking and feeling.
- disorders of association – impairment of the associative process and consequent thinking disorders,
- affect disorders – depletion, rigidity and shallowness of emotion,
- visual, auditory, olfactory, gustatory, sensory hallucinations,
- memory disorders,
- attributing one’s own experiences to the surroundings.
Caring for someone with mental illness Q&A
Find answers to the most frequently asked questions about schizophrenia below for you to use if you don’t know how to help someone with schizophrenia, but would like to change it.
How schizophrenia affects others?
Schizophrenia is surrounded by many assumptions and taboos. As a result, people whose loved ones suffer from the disorder often feel shame and push away from sufferers. On the other hand, those involved in the lives of loved ones with schizophrenia often feel a burden, fatigue and fear behind and from the family with schizophrenia.
How to communicate with someone with schizophrenia?
Be careful with the tone in which you speak. A schizophrenic patient is very sensitive and interprets any impatience to their disadvantage. Don’t raise your voice, and avoid showing anger, as this only intensifies the already strong feelings of guilt. Try to show a lot of warmth and kindness, but avoid excessive empathy.
Here are tips on how to talk to a person with schizophrenia:
- Use simple, understandable sentences.
- Name the topic of conversation and stick to it.
- Try to convey one thought in one speech – what you would like to say.
- Try to keep it as homogeneous as possible.
- Try to gather information first, listen, look and then talk.
What not to say to someone with schizophrenia?
Are you wondering how not to talk to a person with schizophrenia? Below you will find the most common mistakes in communicating with a person with schizophrenia, so that you know what to avoid so that your communication is effective.
This, should be avoided when talking to schizophrenic patients:
- Do not use confusing, highly complex sentences, sentences in which it is not clear what the point is.
- Do not change the topic of conversation chaotically.
- Do not speak in a way in which one sentence contradicts the other one that was spoken earlier.
- If you can, don’t use too many interruptions, interjections, extra words or thoughts unrelated to the topic of conversation.
- Don’t jump to conclusions or generalisations too hastily.
- Avoid lengthy statements and conversations.
How to help someone with schizophrenia?
The primary aim of treating patients with schizophrenia is to enable them to lead as fulfilling a life as possible, with the possibility of returning to society. This is why a highly recommended way of helping the patient is to employ a live-in schizophrenia care professional who will help with daily routines, help distinguish truth from imagination and ensure the patient’s safety.
The patient’s health should be considered in the context of all aspects, both mental and physical. The treatment plan should be individualised to include therapeutic interventions and rehabilitation services that improve the patient’s functioning. Optimal pharmacological treatment of schizophrenia should be combined with psychosocial interventions. The goals of therapy should include improving the patient’s ability to function and quality of life and minimising the adverse impact of the illness and treatment on the patient and family.
Schizophrenia Live-in Care — the best help for your loved ones
If someone in your family or loved ones is suffering from this type of mental illness, do not hesitate to seek help from care. People with schizophrenia are unpredictable and caring for them requires a lot of knowledge and skills, so it is best to put it in the hands of specialists.
Therefore, if you are looking for professional schizophrenia live-in care then be sure to visit our website.