I would like to know if anyone has dealt with schizophrenia, is it genetic?
Thanks in advance for taking time to answer these questions. Anything and everything will help.
Answers: I don't know anyone with schizophrenia, but I thought you might want to know some of what I know. Also, this is a very complicated subject and there are many variables and details, so I'm only going to answer a few parts of your question.
I did a paper on schizophrenia (as an undergrad - I'm not a professional) and read many books on the causes. Many research studies, including familial and identical twins separated at birth, concluded there is a genetic component. However, the correlation seemed slight (in my opinion) and not overwhelming. There were also studies that suggested there was no correlation. The most interesting and sensical explanation I found was the stressor-diathesis model. Basically, the model suggests that there may be something unusual about a person's brain (possibly genetic) that makes the person susceptible to developing characteristics associated with schizophrenia. The susceptibility becomes a manifestation of schizophrenia after the person experiences a traumatic event or a stressor.
I think this would depend on the person's personality and the type of schizophrenia. If a person has schizophrenia catatonic subtype, I don't think danger should be worried about. Paranoid or disorganized types, maybe. I liked to an article and the subtypes are described in there.
Hard to tell?
You can probably tell there are some unusual or odd behaviors, but there are many things that can be. Hallucinations and delusions are commonly associated with schizophrenia, but they, too, can be caused by other disorders, such as untreated depression or bipolar. So, yes it's hard to tell. But I personally don't think finding the label is as important as finding the cause and treating the symptoms.
It shows up in young adulthood. It usually does have something to do with genetics, but can be environmental is some situations. It is caused by chemical and electrical imbalances in your brain, and can be treated with medication. Schizophrenic people can certainly be dangerous, to others and themselves.
Drugs could certainly cause a misdiagnosis, but in response to the first guy, psychology is not a fake science, it is simply difficult to diagnose someone because there are so many factors. Most shrinks would tell you to stop doing drugs right off, maybe if you had done that they wouldn't have thought you were abnormal.
In my son's case, it was due to not taking vitamins during pregnancy, and probably there is a family tendency, but only a tendency. I can see it in my ex, he's a genius and used to make connections between people's actions and what it meant that I sometimes wondered about. My ex is highly functional and has a very responsible job. Highly highly intelligent people who score very high on the Similarities part of the Wechsler IQ test have paranoid ideation, did you know?
It really showed up at age 6, when my son told the psychologist that he saw "the face of God" when he was shown an inkblot or something. The psychologist said my kid was on the "autistic" spectrum.
It didn't officially show up until age 18, like all the other true schizophrenics. He thought he was the Anti-Christ. He was terrified to the core at that thought, knowing that he would go to Hell, etc. I had to reassure him that he was simply too good for that to be true.
It really is genetic, but I was also told that during WWII during some blockage of Leningrad or some other city that the babies born in that time seemed to have a higher rate of schizophrenia, which is where the nutrition/genetic link comes in. It's not often nutrition, probably, but I had a serious vitamin deficiency (my tongue broke out in fissures). This was at like 3 months gestation. I didn't know what to do so I did nothing. Stupid, stupid.
My kid isn't dangerous. He is too intelligent, too civilized. Frankly, he is too kind, and always has been. He just doesn't realize how he comes across, when he is pacing outside, esp. at night and freaks out all the girls. He is completely oblivious. He just has no judgment. He wanders in bad neighborhoods because he is so "in his head" that he isn't paying attention. He also doesn't look ahead at consequences when it is about mundane details of living, like where he is going to go once he takes the bus to that city. Schizo. seem to like to be on the move, riding buses all day long,t hat kind of thing. Doesn't matter where the bus is going, so much. Just a way to while away the time.
He's into the Bible, and in coming up with a "missile defense system" to benefit society. He's got a genius IQ (got an 18 on Similarities part of Wechsler, as well as other high scores--when he was tested at age 7 the psychologist said he was one of the smartest kids he had ever tested, as a matter of fact), it is really a pity because he really could benefit the US if he could access that brain of his. He paces all the time. He's restless, can't sleep at night.
Medications don't help when you have delusions, which my kid has. He thinks some people are Satanists--a few no doubt are, but I don't go around thinking about it. It's just not something I would think of.
Schizophrenics seem to have a thing for the Bible, they read it and interpret it literally and also regard "sinners" harshly. I know my kid wouldn't kill, but a woman I knew had a cousin who was schi. and he did kill a prostitute due to moral outrage at her occupation.
A true schizophrenic paces all the time. Almost a hallmark. Might also apply to other people. There is a reason why poeple who are mentally ill are termed "disturbed".
Forgot somethign: my son went into a catatonic state as he was in jail for returning to ask a police officer where the closest homeless shelter was after being told not to return. That stupid cop just arrested him. He was in the jail for 6 weeks and went into a catatonic state. They took him the to hospital in what looked like a coma. I found out just by chance about it, it took 3 days for him to come out of it. It was most bizarre, one minute he's in this coma, and the doc comes in on the second or third day and asked him if he wanted lunch, and he sat up like Lazarus and said "sure". It was absolutely incredible.
My son was bulled for 2 years in that parochial school and the asst. principal wouldn't help (due to envy over my kid's grades, his own son,. he had just learned would never read past a 1st grade level). Why did I let my son rot in that place? My ex again. He wanted the kids to 'stay together". I was such an idiot.
The sad thing is they are mostly homeless, thanks to the ACLU that took communities to court to force them to discharge mentally ill patients who lived on community farms and farmed the land. The newest drugs don't help everyone, and these poeple who are not helped wind up on the street with no place to go. Frankly, the farm was a much better/safer place for them than those mean streets are.
Well, scattered thoughts, hope some of the details help. Is this for a paper?
i worked in a large mental health facility for 30 years with hundreds of schizophrenics. for the most part it defiantly was genetic, as whole family members would be afflicted with this illness, although not everyone. it usually starts in males around 16 and females a little later. it shows up sometimes when a person starts isolating themselves, and being paranoid, delusional, hallucinating, are usu sally the symptoms of this illness. it is felt that it is in the brain chemistry, but does respond well to medication., i believe that the environment has little to do with it, because this illness is not choosy, and can affect all kinds of people. for the most part they are not dangerous. i worked in a maximum security unit for the criminally insane, in Ontario Canada, and only had a few schizophrenics it it. you may not be able to tell if a person is on medication, and some people that are schizophrenic hold down jobs, have families, and are productive. if a schizophrenic is off their medication, they are usually pacing, responding halucinations, talking to themselves and seem preoccupied. hope this answers your question.
yes it is genetic... but for me, no one in my family has ever had it. it just happened to get me after past experience of drug use (meth and ecstasy). i mixed my drugs and abused them, and it caused huge damage to my brain. now, i suffer from symptoms of paranoid schizophrenia, but i've learned how to live with it. in my case, i can see a professional, but i've learned that i must reap what i sow anyway. i messed my brain up and i must live with it. taking meds will probably make me feel better, but it will always be there, so i might as well live with it and handle it on my own. it is a dangerous thing, schizophrenics cause problems for themselves and it effects the people around them. in my case, i lost all of my friends because i had this whole conspiracy theory about them being "in" on something i wasn't "in" on - plotting against me. same went for my family. my family stuck with me though. in present time, i still suffer the symptoms, but i learned to not obsess on the thoughts and i always tell myself "no one really has any time in their life to plot against you..." i have the symptoms, but i don't obsess on them. i do not have close friends anymore, i just do my own things, work and studies and i'm completely fine. i isolate myself at home, but when i'm at work and school, i just keep to myself. that's just how i cope with my situation. maybe it's all in my head. no one ever knows. all i know is schizophrenia is serious. so if you know someone who might have it, or yourself. then if you feel like you/they need to get help, then go and get help. take care...
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