Schizophrenia is a devastating mental illness, and is probably the most distressing and disabling of the severe mental disorders. Schizophrenia can usually first be seen in early child hood. Schizophrenia is a very confusing disease that the public isn't well educated on, so the first signs of schizophrenia can be confusing and hard on friends and family. Schizophrenia hampers the ability of the affected person to interact with other people and in society. People with schizophrenia suffer from difficulties in their thought processes, which lead to hallucinations, delusions, disordered thinking, and unusual speech or behavior. http://www.psychiatry24x7.com/bgdisplay.jhtml?itemname=nonprofbackschiz010.
There are no known causes of schizophrenia, and that's what makes this disease so scary. Some believe however that schizophrenia may be genetic. Research with cat-scans have showed that people with schizophrenia have abnormalities in the brain, however these abnormalities are not seen in every which adds even more questions to the mystery of schizophrenia.
Treatment of schizophrenia is varied in success and forms in which the treatment is in. The first drugs for schizophrenia were developed in the mid 1950's. Other treatments were cruder. An early treatment was induced seizures to "clean the mind" this treatment never really worked and only caused more damage to the patient. A number of new, effective medications for schizophrenia with fewer and less severe side effects than older medications have been introduced in the past decade. The newer antipsychotic drugs (such as clozapine, risperidone and olanzapine) appear to block the effects of both serotonin and dopamine, and as a result they seem to have effects on a broader range of symptoms.
The medications have shown progress with the psychotic symptoms of the disease, but hasn't shown success with the behavioral effects of this disease. Just like any injury, schizophrenics have rehabilitation, which emphasizes social and vocational training to help patients and former patients overcome difficulties in these areas.