Schizophrenia is an illness that affects the way we think and our perception of the world. It affects 1 in 100 people in the UK, men and women alike. It generally emerges early in life, between the ages of 15 and 35.
Symptoms are many and diverse, especially because everyone is affected differently.
Hearing voices is one of the most common symptoms of schizophrenia, but not everyone with the condition will experience them, or necessarily find them distressing.
Other symptoms can include hallucinations, delusions, disorganised thinking, lack of motivation, changes in body language and emotions, less interest in social activities.
Symptoms manifest themselves in different ways – for some people they are always there, for others they come and go, or only ever occur once or twice in a lifetime.
Some symptoms can make it more difficult to manage with daily life, but many people have found that it is possible to do so. Medication, psychological treatments (like talking therapies) and self-care techniques are available and can help.
Schizophrenia is one of the most misunderstood mental illnesses and has some of the highest levels of stigma attached to it. This is because most people still know so little about the condition.
Share our video to help us tell more people what living with schizophrenia is really like.
For more detailed information on schizophrenia, including how to get help and support, download our factsheet.
If you are concerned about a loved one or friend then our advice and informaiton line is open Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm. Please visit www.rethink.org/advice for more details.
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