What is schizophrenia?
Schizophrenia is one of the most complex of all mental health disorders. It involves a severe, chronic, and disabling disturbance of the brain. And, what was once classified as a psychological disease is now classified as a brain disease.
What causes schizophrenia?
There is no known single cause responsible for schizophrenia. It is believed that a chemical imbalance in the brain is an inherited factor which is necessary for schizophrenia to develop. However, it is likely that many factors – genetic, behavioral, and environmental – play a role in the development of this mental health condition.
Schizophrenia is considered to be multifactorially inherited. Multifactorial inheritance means that “many factors” are involved. The factors are usually both genetic and environmental, where a combination of genes from both parents, in addition to unknown environmental factors, produce the trait or condition. Often, one gender (either males or females) is affected more frequently than the other in multifactorial traits. There appears to be a different threshold of expression, which means that one gender is more likely to show the problem, over the other gender. Slightly more males develop schizophrenia in childhood, however, by adolescence schizophrenia affects males and females equally.
Treatment for schizophrenia:
Specific treatment for schizophrenia will be determined by your physician based on:
- your age, overall health, and medical history
- extent of the disease
- your tolerance for specific medications, procedures, or therapies
- expectations for the course of the disease
- your opinion or preference