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Abilify Maintena®

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle1,2

Many people with schizophrenia live happy and fulfilling lives, even if they continue to experience symptoms. Managing schizophrenia is about more than just taking your medicine. Your general health and wellbeing is important and can have an affect on your mental health.

Exercise3,4

 

There are many reasons why physical activity is good for your body – having a healthy heart and improving your joints and bones are just two, but physical activity is also beneficial for your mental health and wellbeing. Regular exercise can help you to feel better and also help reduce stress and enable you to establish a daily routine. It doesn’t just mean going to the gym, there are lots of ways to get exercise such as going for a walk, swimming or playing a sport that you enjoy. Speak to your doctor or nurse for help in choosing an exercise regimen that’s suitable for you.


Diet5  

 

It is important to eat a balanced diet to maintain a good level of general health, but food can also have a long-lasting effect on your mental health. Your brain needs a mix of nutrients to stay healthy and function well, just like the other organs in your body. A diet that’s good for your physical health is also good for your mental health.

A healthy balanced diet includes:

  • Different types of fruit and vegetables
  • Wholegrain cereals or bread, nuts and seeds
  • Dairy products
  • Oily fish
  • Plenty of water

Try to eat at least three meals each day and drink plenty of water. Try to limit how many high-caffeine or sugary drinks you have, and avoid too much alcohol. Speak to your doctor or nurse for help in choosing a diet that is right for you.


Here are some other useful tips to help manage your condition:

Try to cut down on stress 

  • Too much stress may make your symptoms worse and increase your chance of relapse
     
  • If you feel you are experiencing too much stress, it may help to explore the patient support services in your area

Do things you enjoy 

  • Taking part in activities that you enjoy may boost self-esteem and confidence and help you stay well

Maintain relationships 

  • Feeling connected to people may help you to feel more valued and regain confidence to face difficult situations 

Use peer support 

  • Peer support brings people together who have experienced similar things and some people find sharing their experiences helpful

Look out for warning signs of you becoming unwell 

  • These may include feeling anxious, sleeping less well, feeling suspicious, hearing quiet voices and avoiding others

Plan for difficult times 

  • When you are unwell, it may be more difficult to tell people what you want
     
  • You may find it helpful to talk to someone you trust about how you would like to be helped in these situations

  1. Mind, Understanding schizophrenia. Available at https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/schizophrenia/#.W4lZw5NKiu4 (Last accessed July 2021). 
  2. Paluska, S.A. and Schwnek, T.L. Sports Med. 2000;29(3):167–180. 
  3. Mental Health Ireland, Exercise. Available at www.mentalhealthireland.ie/a-to-z/exercise (Last accessed July 2021). 
  4. Get active, feel good! Available at https://www.mind.org.uk/about-us/our-policy-work/sport-physical-activity-and-mental-health/get-active-feel-good/ (Last accessed July 2021). 
  5. Food and Mood. Available at https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/tips-for-everyday-living/food-and-mood/about-food-and-mood/ (Last accessed July 2021). 

Understanding schizophrenia
Abilify Maintena patient information

Date of Preparation: July 2022