Symptoms usually start in adolescence or early adulthood. They often appear slowly and become more disturbing and bizarre over time, or they may occur in a matter of weeks or months.
- Hallucinations—seeing or hearing things/voices that are not there
- Delusions—strong but false personal beliefs that are not based in reality
- Disorganized thinking
- Disorganized speech—lack of ability to speak in a way that makes sense or carry a conversation
- Catatonic behavior—slow movement, repeating rhythmic gestures, pacing, walking in circles, negativism, repetitive speech
- Emotional flatness—flat speech, lack of facial expression, and general disinterest and withdrawal
- Paranoia—a psychosis characterized by systematized delusions of persecution or grandeur
- Inappropriate laughter
- Poor hygiene and self-care
Associated conditions include:
Early diagnosis is extremely important. People who are diagnosed early are able to:
- Stabilize their symptoms
- Decrease the risk of suicide
- Decrease alcohol and substance abuse
- Reduce the chance of relapse and/or hospitalization
A person must have active symptoms for at least two weeks, and other symptoms for at least six months before a diagnosis can be made. The doctor will rule out other causes such as drug use, medical illness, or a different mental condition.
Please be aware that this information is provided to supplement the care provided by your physician. It is neither intended nor implied to be a substitute for professional medical advice. CALL YOUR HEALTHCARE PROVIDER IMMEDIATELY IF YOU THINK YOU MAY HAVE A MEDICAL EMERGENCY. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider prior to starting any new treatment or with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Copyright © 2019 EBSCO Publishing All rights reserved.