Schizophrenia Paper

1594 words - 7 pages

PSYC 100

“I’m not a Schizophrenic, I have Schizophrenia!”
December 7, 2011

The movie that I have chosen to write about is called “Identity” with John Cusack, Ray Liotta, and Amanda Peete as the big names. Its focus is on an inmate who is 24 hours from being executed. His defense team is giving it one last attempt to prove he has schizophrenia and was not aware of the murders he committed. The movie does not give much backdrop into the causes or symptoms, but shows one method of treatment. I will explain the symptoms, causes, treatments, and some other useful information on this disease.
The best place to start is symptoms of Schizophrenia. They are broken down into 3 main ...view middle of the document...

This may be where they make the same movement over and over again or make no movement at all as if in a catatonic state.
Negative symptoms are associated with disruptions to normal emotions and behaviors. Often times, these symptoms are mistaken for depression. People with negative symptoms need help with everyday life. They express a lack of pleasure in daily life, poor ability to begin and complete activities, and speak very little with other people. Another negative symptom is the “flat affect” where a person’s face does not move and they talk in a mono tone voice. My father had a similar “flat affect” symptom which turned out to be Bell’s palsy. This was a relaxation of the muscles in the face and caused slurred speech.
The last type of symptom is called cognitive symptoms which are very subtle. These are very hard to detect and normally can only be discovered as the results of other testing. The signs are bad “executive functioning” which is the ability to process information and make choices. Another is the lack of focus or ability to pay attention. Finally, issues with working memory which is the ability to use information that you just learned.
Schizophrenia is something that has been diagnosed in men and women equally as well as many different ethnic backgrounds. It’s most common in young adults between the ages of 16 and 30 and rarely seen after 45years of age. It is commonly not diagnosed in children but I think part of that may have to do with their age. A lot of the symptoms can easily be hard to diagnose or catch because young children commonly have imaginary friends. They also have a lack of focus and ability to complete tasks.
An interesting fact I found was the connection between Schizophrenia and substance and drug abuse. A lot of the symptoms are the same like hallucinations and slowed motor skills, etc. People with schizophrenia are also three times more likely to be addicted to nicotine than other people. This can cause an issue because currently more research is being done into the theory that smoking makes antipsychotic drugs less effective. For these reasons and dependency, it is extremely difficult for someone with schizophrenia to quit smoking.
Experts think that schizophrenia is caused by several factors to include genes and environment as well as different brain chemistry and structure. It isn’t a certain gene that causes schizophrenia by itself, but with the genes we inherit from out parents, may have higher rates of rare mutations. It also appears that heredity plays into this cause if a brother, sister, or mother has a 10% chance of getting schizophrenia than someone else. This is another area where research is still being done to possibly predict which genes or combination is most likely to develop schizophrenia. Scientists also believe that factors such as exposure to viruses or malnutrition before birth, problems during birth and other psychosocial factors can contribute to...

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