Schizoaffective disorder (schizophrenia) is a very severe mental disease that impairs a person’s ability to think rationally, regulate emotions, make choices, and interact with others. It is a medical condition that is complicated and has a lengthy duration. Although it is difficult to determine the precise prevalence of schizophrenia, estimates vary from 0.25 percent to 0.64 percent of people in the United States. Although schizophrenia may manifest itself at any age, the typical age of onset for males is in their late teens to early twenties, and for women, it is in their late twenties to early thirties. People younger than 12 or older than 40 years of age are more likely than not to be diagnosed with schizophrenia. It is possible to live a fulfilling life while having schizophrenia.
When it comes to diagnosing schizophrenia in adolescents, it may be challenging. This is due to the fact that the early indications of depression may include a change in friends, a decrease in grades, sleep difficulties, and irritability—all of which are typical and nonspecific symptoms of teenage depression. Isolation and withdrawal from others, a rise in odd ideas and suspicions, and a family history of psychosis are all potential risk factors for developing psychosis. This stage of the illness is referred to as the “prodromal” phase in the case of young individuals who develop schizophrenia.
When dealing with any illness, it is important to get a thorough medical examination in order to acquire the most accurate diagnosis. Some of the following symptoms must be present in the setting of decreased functioning for at least 6 months in order to make a diagnosis of schizophrenia:
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