The peak age of onset of schizophrenia is 15 – 25 years in men and 20 – 30 years in women. It is often preceded by a prodromal phase of vague symptoms, some odd behaviours and a decline in functioning at school or work and interpersonally.
Although schizophrenia can occur at any age, the average age of onset tends to be in the late teens to the early 20s for men, and the late 20s to early 30s for women. It is uncommon for schizophrenia to be diagnosed in a person younger than 12 or older than 40. It is possible to live well with schizophrenia.
People with schizophrenia generally live about 15 to 20 years less than those without the condition. Schizophrenia is a complex disease. There are many ways it can result in serious complications.
Schizophrenia treatment includes medication, therapy, social and family support, and the use of social services. Treatment must be ongoing, as this is a chronic illness without a cure. When schizophrenia is treated and managed over the long-term, most people can live normal, productive, and fulfilling lives.
Men usually develop schizophrenia symptoms between their late teens and early twenties, whereas symptoms usually appear in women in their late twenties to early thirties. Across all genders, though, schizophrenia symptoms rarely occur before the age of 13 or after the age of 40.
Past studies have reported that offspring of affected mothers have a higher risk of schizophrenia than the offspring of affected fathers; however, other studies found no such maternal effect [Gottesman and Shields, 1976].
The exact causes of schizophrenia are unknown. Research suggests a combination of physical, genetic, psychological and environmental factors can make a person more likely to develop the condition. Some people may be prone to schizophrenia, and a stressful or emotional life event might trigger a psychotic episode.
Connecting face-to-face with others is the most effective way to calm your nervous system and relieve stress. Since stress can trigger psychosis and make the symptoms of schizophrenia worse, keeping it under control is extremely important.
New research shows that people who have schizophrenia can still live independently, pursue higher education or hold down a demanding job. In fact, many do manage their illness and live full and highly productive lives.
Haloperidol, fluphenazine, and chlorpromazine are known as conventional, or typical, antipsychotics and have been used to treat schizophrenia for years.
Schizophrenia is a chronic disorder that may wax and wane in severity, but it does not typically worsen with age. 1 For some people, the symptoms of schizophrenia will improve over time while for others the symptoms will stay the same or get worse.
Some people do recover “fully” from schizophrenia. Ten years after diagnosis: 50% of people with schizophrenia recover or improve to the point they can work and live on their own. 25% are better but need help from a strong support network to get by.
Cognitive decline can eventually lead to dementia. A 2018 study suggests that people with schizophrenia have a nearly twofold increased risk of dementia after adjusting for other standard risk factors.
In older adults with schizophrenia, extrapyramidal symptoms occur at lower D2 receptor occupancies than in younger patients. Older age is also a risk factor for antipsychotic adverse effects such as parkinsonism, tardive dyskinesia, falls, and metabolic syndrome.
Early warning signs of schizophrenia
In this early phase of schizophrenia, you may seem eccentric, unmotivated, emotionless, and reclusive to others. You may start to isolate yourself, begin neglecting your appearance, say peculiar things, and show a general indifference to life.
The SSA can assist a person with schizophrenia as the administration considers it a disability. To qualify for disability benefits, a person with schizophrenia will have to meet the SSA criteria and show that their condition is persistent and severe and prevents them from engaging in substantial gainful activity.
People with schizophrenia hold all kinds of positions, including senior managers and other professionals, cleaners and laborers, and salespeople. You may not have experience in a certain field, but if the job tasks fit your abilities, give it a try.
Newman adds that with support, parents with schizophrenia can provide for their children by working, as well as teaching and loving them just like parents without mental health conditions.
The king of leafy greens, spinach is high in folate. (It's called folic acid when it's used in supplements or to fortify foods.) Folate can help ease symptoms of schizophrenia. Along with spinach, you can find it in black-eyed peas, asparagus, and beef liver.
Antipsychotics. Antipsychotics are usually recommended as the initial treatment for the symptoms of an acute schizophrenic episode. They work by blocking the effect of the chemical dopamine on the brain.
Having schizophrenia could affect your ability to drive. If you've had or currently suffer from a medical condition or disability that may affect your driving you must tell the Driver & Vehicle Agency (DVA).
Stressful life events
Highly stressful or life-changing events may sometimes trigger schizophrenia. These can include: being abused or harassed. losing someone close to you.
Unfortunately, most people with schizophrenia are unaware that their symptoms are warning signs of a mental disorder. Their lives may be unraveling, yet they may believe that their experiences are normal. Or they may feel that they're blessed or cursed with special insights that others can't see.