A person who has schizophrenia may perceive things that aren’t real, believe false or irrational ideas, have disorganized thinking and speech, and develop a flat affect, indicating a lack of pleasure in things they once enjoyed. The symptoms of schizophrenia can interfere with a person’s daily routine and affect their ability to thrive. It’s crucial for those who are experiencing symptoms of schizophrenia to receive help from qualified professionals.
At Coachella Valley Behavioral Health, we provide inpatient schizophrenia treatment for adults age 18 and older who are experiencing crisis-level symptoms. We offer clinically excellent therapies and services that can help our patients stabilize and begin the healing process.
Signs & Symptoms of Schizophrenia
According to the American Psychiatric Association (APA), symptoms of schizophrenia can be organized into three categories: positive symptoms, negative symptoms, and disorganized symptoms.
Positive symptoms include new behaviors and thoughts, such as:
- Delusions: Delusions are false beliefs that are not based in reality. Delusions can involve a sense of false superiority, the feeling of invincibility, or the idea that others are out to get you.
- Hallucinations: Hallucinations involve hearing, seeing, feeling, or smelling things others don’t. The most common type of hallucination associated with schizophrenia is hearing voices.
- Inappropriate emotional responses: Those who are suffering from schizophrenia can have emotional responses to situations that seem out of context or confusing. For example, if someone brings up a sad topic, a person who has schizophrenia might begin laughing.
Negative symptoms involve the absence of typical behaviors and responses. When someone is experiencing negative symptoms of schizophrenia, they can seem withdrawn and unresponsive to those around them. Negative symptoms of schizophrenia can include:
- Social withdrawal: The tendency to avoid social settings and interactions and a lack of interest in developing or maintaining interpersonal relationships are examples of negative symptoms of schizophrenia.
- Flat affect: A flat affect involves a reduced range of emotional expression or a complete lack of response altogether. For example, a person who has schizophrenia may speak with a monotone voice or have very limited facial expressions when participating in a conversation.
- Loss of interest and pleasure: A negative symptom of schizophrenia is anhedonia, the reduced motivation to engage in activities or tasks that were previously enjoyable.
- Decreased speech: Alogia, or decreased amount and quality of speech, can be marked by extremely brief answers or the struggle to explain thoughts in a clear way.
- Lowered motivation: The lack of motivation, or apathy, toward personal and social goals can be a symptom of schizophrenia.
Disorganized symptoms of schizophrenia are characterized by difficulty organizing one’s thoughts, speech, or behaviors. Examples of disorganized symptoms of schizophrenia include:
- Difficulty with motor activity: People who have schizophrenia can have symptoms of catatonia, which can manifest as immobility or excessive motor activity. Those who are experiencing symptoms of catatonia may have rigid postures and engage in repetitive or purposeless movements.
- Impaired judgment: Disorganized thinking can result in difficulty making sound choices, from daily decisions about clothing and diet to larger life choices like those pertaining to school or work.
- Disorganized speech: People who are experiencing disorganized symptoms of schizophrenia can use speech that is incoherent and hard to understand. They may speak as if they make sense, but they use words only they understand or jump from one topic to another without clarity.
Potential Effects of Untreated Schizophrenia
If a person who has schizophrenia does not receive effective professional treatment, they can struggle with work, school, and relationships. They can also experience symptoms that can affect their ability to maintain a daily routine and enjoy life. Harmful effects of schizophrenia may include:
- Difficulty achieving educational or career goals
- Trouble keeping a job
- Social isolation
- Physical health problems
- Co-occurring mental health and substance use disorders
- Strained relationships with friends and family members
- Decreased functioning
- Death by suicide
With treatment, people who have schizophrenia can learn to manage their symptoms and lead fulfilling lives. Early intervention can be the most effective, but receiving professional care at any point can help someone who has schizophrenia heal. At Coachella Valley Behavioral Health, our goal is to provide a safe and comfortable environment where people who are struggling with schizophrenia can get the care they need to improve their lives.
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, Fifth Edition (DSM-5) reports that the lifetime prevalence of schizophrenia is approximately 0.3%-0.7%.
The National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) also reports the following statistics and facts about schizophrenia among Americans:
- Those who suffer from schizophrenia have a higher risk for early death compared with the general population of the United States.
- Typically, people develop schizophrenia between their late teens and early 30s. Symptoms often appear in the late teens to early 20s in males and in the early 20s to early 30s in females.
- Approximately 50% of those who struggle with schizophrenia also suffer from co-occurring behavioral health concerns.
Therapies & Services We Provide at Our Schizophrenia Treatment Center
Each patient at our schizophrenia treatment center completes a thorough evaluation before receiving care in our inpatient program. This evaluation gives our team insight into the patient’s behavioral health treatment history, symptoms, and therapeutic goals. Based on the information we gather during the evaluation, our team can design a personalized treatment plan that is tailored to the patient’s needs. Treatment plans at Coachella Valley Behavioral Health can include:
- Basic medical care: We provide basic medical care for patients who need it.
- Medication management services: For each patient who is prescribed medication as part of their treatment plan, our team provides medication management services. Our team can prescribe medication after a thorough evaluation and adjust the dosage as needed throughout the patient’s stay with us.
- Group therapy: At Coachella Valley Behavioral Health, counselors or nurses lead group therapy sessions daily. These sessions promote peer support and provide education on topics like coping strategies, interpersonal relationships, and communication skills.
- Family therapy: Patients whose treatment plans include family therapy can participate in sessions led by our social workers, counselors, or therapists. These behavioral health professionals can help family members understand the symptoms of schizophrenia and improve communication.
- Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT): Therapists use CBT to help patients identify and alter negative thought patterns that could be affecting their progress.
- Motivational interviewing: Motivational interviewing includes open-ended questions designed to allow the patient to explore their own ideas about what they want to achieve during schizophrenia treatment.
- Experiential therapies: At Coachella Valley Behavioral Health, we offer experiential therapies like art, music, and yoga daily.
Benefits of Inpatient Schizophrenia Treatment at Coachella Valley Behavioral Health
At Coachella Valley Behavioral Health, we provide intensive care for those who are experiencing crisis-level symptoms of schizophrenia. Our goal is to help these patients stabilize and form a foundation for healing that continues after they are discharged from our care. The benefits of receiving inpatient schizophrenia treatment at Coachella Valley Behavioral Health can include:
- Improved coping skills: During group therapy sessions, patients can work with social workers, counselors, and peers to develop coping strategies that support their healing and growth.
- Symptom management: Education offered in group therapy sessions can help patients learn to manage their symptoms, while medications can help reduce hallucinations, disordered thinking, and delusional thinking.
- Increased cognitive functioning: Inpatient care can help patients address problems with memory, focus, and decision-making that are common for those who struggle with schizophrenia.
- Stabilization: An inpatient treatment center can offer the intensive care necessary for patients to stabilize.
- Better quality of life: Effective inpatient treatment can help each patient develop skills that improve their daily functioning and relationships, leading to a more fulfilling life.
- Community support: Schizophrenia treatment at Coachella Valley Behavioral Health includes daily group therapy sessions that promote interaction between peers who can share their experiences and support. This support can be an invaluable part of inpatient care at our schizophrenia treatment center.
Because we see inpatient care as only one part of a person’s treatment process, we design a thorough aftercare plan for each of our patients. The patient’s care team thoughtfully creates this plan, which can include referrals for outpatient services, community support groups, and other local services. We believe that it is possible for people who have schizophrenia to live fulfilling lives, and we want to provide them with the education and resources they need to continue making progress after they leave our care. If you have any questions about whether Coachella Valley Behavioral Health would be the ideal place for you or a loved one to receive schizophrenia treatment, please reach out to our team today.
This content was written on behalf of and reviewed by the clinical staff at Coachella Valley Behavioral Health.