Schizophrenia is a chronic, severe brain disorder that is extremely disabling and affects about one percent of Americans. Men and women with this disorder may hear voices that others do not, they may believe that others can read the minds of others, or they may think that people are plotting to kill them. Additionally, those with schizophrenia may not make sense when they talk, can sit for hours without moving, and at other times may seem completely normal until they share with others what they are really thinking. Although there is currently no cure for schizophrenia, there are many treatments that have been shown to be effective. Many individuals are able to improve enough to be able to lead independent, happy lives.
Ohio Hospital for Psychiatry provides a continuum of care for adults and senior adults who are struggling with a number of different mental health problems. We understand how devastating it can be to receive a diagnosis of schizophrenia and we know how terrifying the symptoms you are experiencing can be. Recovery from schizophrenia is a lifelong process and the compassionate staff at Ohio Hospital are ready to help you start that journey.
How to Help a Loved One Seek Treatment
Family members of a schizophrenic are also affected by the disorder. Those with schizophrenia can have difficulty holding down a job or caring for themselves and often rely on loved ones for help. As a family member, you can be extremely helpful to your loved one by helping them find the right treatment, cope with symptoms, and support them throughout the whole process. In order to successfully deal with schizophrenia and help your loved one, here are some things to keep in mind:
- Accept the illness and the associated difficulties
- Be realistic about what you expect of the person with schizophrenia and of yourself
- Try to maintain a sense of humor
- Educate yourself about the disorder
- Reduce stress
- Empower your loved one
The best thing you can do for your loved one who is struggling with schizophrenia is to get them into treatment and help them stick with it. Often the first challenge is convincing them to go and see a doctor. Here are a couple of strategies that may help:
- Provide options: your loved one may be more willing to see a doctor if he or she feel that he or she is in control of the situation.
- Focus on a particular symptom: it may be easier to get your loved one into the doctor if you suggest that he or she go to someone to talk about a lack of energy or insomnia.
Finally, in order to successfully deal with a family member who has schizophrenia, it is also very important for you to remember to take care of yourself. It will be easier to keep a positive outlook when you have others that you are able to turn to for support. Here are some ideas for how to reach out for support:
- Join a support group
- Make time for yourself
- Look after your own health
- Cultivate other relationships
Why Seek Treatment at Ohio Hospital for Psychiatry
Schizophrenia is a mental health disorder that is characterized by a broad range of abnormal behaviors that cause extreme amounts of disruption in not only the individual’s life, but in the lives around them. Probably the most obvious impairment is the way in which a schizophrenic individual thinks, as most often individuals will lose their ability to rationally evaluate the world around them. Someone who is schizophrenic may be unable to hold down a job, have relationships with others, or even be able to take care of him or herself. It is imperative that those with schizophrenia seek immediate treatment so that they can get symptoms under control and go on to lead a happy life.
Successful treatment for schizophrenia aims to relieve current symptoms, prevent future psychotic episodes, and restore an individual’s ability to function and enjoy a meaningful life. An inpatient treatment program that combines medication with supportive services and therapy is the most effective approach. Through psychotherapy you can explore ways in which you can cope with your symptoms and how to best approach any difficulties. Through group and family therapy, individuals with schizophrenia can practice social skills, learn ways in which to prevent a relapse, and educate themselves more about their disorder.
Program Philosophy and Benefits
At Ohio Hospital for Psychiatry, our philosophy centers on the understanding that our patients have a history of life experiences that have contributed to the person they have become. Their current psychosocial stressors and psychiatric diagnoses represent only a small part of who they are. Through a variety of modalities, our goal is to instill hope, progress, and a renewed sense of wellness for each one of our patients.
Treatment Offered at Ohio Hospital for Psychiatry
At Ohio Hospital for Psychiatry, our treatment philosophy is characterized by an active interdisciplinary approach with a highly qualified staff who is responsible for the care and treatment of our patients. Upon arriving to our hospital, you will complete a comprehensive assessment in order to determine the level of care needed and to identify specific needs that are unique to you. In order to successfully treat schizophrenia, we rely on the combination of medication and psychotherapy. Some of the treatment methods we use include:
Medication is key in the treatment of schizophrenia as the goal is placed on eliminating symptoms. Drugs such as antipsychotics are used to treat the psychotic symptoms such as hallucinations and other breaks with reality. Medication use is monitored closely by the staff physician and alterations are made if needed.
Individual therapy provides patients one-on-one time with a therapist where they can get help dealing with the everyday challenges associated with schizophrenia. Through individual therapy a person can learn coping mechanisms that will allow them to address various problems and learn the skills necessary in order to be able to do things like socialize appropriately and hold down a job.
Group therapy is held on a daily basis and is a place where those with similar difficulties can work together to improve social skills, overcome problems with communication, and learn how to form healthy relationships. Some of the group topics at Ohio Hospital may include medication complications, mood regulation, daily living skills, and relapse prevention.
Family therapy is a crucial aspect of the treatment process for those with schizophrenia because, once the program is complete, many individuals will return to the care of their family. Family therapy can help educate everyone about the disorder, develop coping skills, and learn some problem solving skills. By learning all of this, family members will be able to provide their loved ones with the best possible care, while making sure they continue to receive therapy and take their medication.
Continuing Care and Levels of Treatment
When your time in our inpatient treatment program comes to an end, you will work with your treatment team to help determine your next step in the recovery process. Some of our patients will be referred to our partial hospitalization or intensive outpatient program. Both of these are short-term structured programs that allow individuals to continue with the treatment they need while also integrating back into the community. If patients are at the point where they will be discharged home, they will be provided with case management in order to get matched up with support groups and other outside resources.