Sunday May 22 to Saturday May 28, 2022 is Schizophrenia Awareness Week and Monday May 24 is the official, Schizophrenia Awareness Day. This year’s theme is ‘Connecting With Hope’ and the focus is connecting with real-life stories of lived-experience in a way that brings hope to people struggling with Schizophrenia and psychosis. The emphasis is on making new connections and cultivating those connections to form a strong support network and assist with recovery, a cornerstone of Flourish Australia’s own approach to peer support in mental health recovery.
What exactly is Schizophrenia?
It is a misconception that a person experiencing Schizophrenia has a so-called ‘split personality’. Shizophrenia is a medical condition that affects regular functioning of the brain, interfering with a person’s ability to interpret reality, and the way they think, feel and act. For many people, it is a prolonged illness which can involve years of distressing symptoms and disability.
What are the symptoms?
Each person is an individual and may exhibit any combination of symptoms ranging from persistent psychosis, to hallucinations and delusions, confusion or disordered thinking and debilitating behaviour that impairs daily functioning.
Who is affected?
About one in every hundred people will develop Schizophrenia at some time in their lives, with symptoms commonly presenting in their late teens and early twenties. The cause is not fully understood. It is probable that some people are born with a predisposition to develop the condition which may be triggered in later life by factors such as stress or drug use.
Can you recover from Schizophrenia?
With early intervention and on-going treatment, some people find that they are better able to manage their symptoms, or that they improve over time, while others recover completely. Treatment generally includes a combination of medication to restore the brain’s chemical balance, and community support.
Don’t hesitate to ask for help!
If you are concerned about symptoms you are experiencing, talk to your GP or health professional. Flourish Australia are leaders in complex mental health support, and a registered NDIS provider. If you are already accessing our services, you can speak to your Peer Worker. Or contact us on 1300 779 270 for a confidential chat and we will connect you with the right support for your needs, near you.
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