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Abilify Maintena®

Understanding schizophrenia

What is schizophrenia? 

Schizophrenia is a chronic and severe illness that affects the brain and can interfere with a person’s ability to think clearly, manage emotions, make decisions and relate to others. 

It is important to remember that schizophrenia is a treatable illness and it is possible to have a fulfilled life with schizophrenia

You are the expert on your own illness and can work with your treatment team to manage it in the best way. In addition to engaging with the lifestyle, psychological and medicines advice provided, always seek help from the treatment team or trusted friends or family if you experience any warning signs that you are becoming unwell.

Most patients with schizophrenia experience recurring episodes of symptoms (relapses) of varying duration and frequency. In between these episodes symptoms may improve or recover

Schizoprenia symptoms are often separated into two groups, ‘positive’ and ‘negative’, however this doesn’t mean that the symptoms are good or bad.1    

 

 

Positive symptoms are behaviours or experiences that you start to have with schizophrenia and may include

  • Hallucinations (hearing voices, seeing or feeling things that are not there)
  • Delusions (believing things that are not real or true)
  • Disorganised speech and behaviour (difficulty remembering things or organising thoughts)

People with schizophrenia can sometimes experience a reduction in, or lack of certain behaviours or experiences. This is referred to as negative symptoms, and may include::

  • Feeling disconnected from your emotions 
  • A lack of motivation (hard to start and keep up activities)
  • Limited thoughts
  • No longer enjoying everyday activities or spending time with people
It is important to remember that not everyone will experience all of the symptoms described above.

 

  1. Mind, Understanding schizophrenia. Available at https://www.mind.org.uk/information-support/types-of-mental-health-problems/schizophrenia/#.W4lZw5NKiu4 (Last accessed July 2021).

Managing your condition
Abilify Maintena patient information

Date of Preparation: July 2022