Schizophrenia treatment involves medications and therapy to reduce the risk of future psychotic episodes and improve relationships.
Medications are the cornerstone of schizophrenia treatment. But because medications for schizophrenia can cause serious but rare side effects, people with schizophrenia may be reluctant to take them.
Antipsychotic medications are the most commonly prescribed to treat schizophrenia. They're thought to control symptoms by affecting the brain neurotransmitters dopamine and serotonin. A person's willingness to cooperate with treatment may affect medication choice. Someone who is uncooperative may need to be given injections instead of taking a pill.
Someone who is agitated may need to be calmed initially with a benzodiazepine such as lorazepam (Ativan), which may be combined with an antipsychotic. Although medications are the cornerstone of schizophrenia treatment, once psychosis recedes, psychosocial treatments also are important.
Psychosocial Treatments Include:
Social skills training
– focuses on improving communication and social interactions
Family therapy – provides support and education to families dealing with schizophrenia
Vocational rehabilitation and supported employment – helps people with schizophrenia find and keep jobs
Individual therapy – learning to cope with stress and identify early warning signs of relapse can help people with schizophrenia manage their illness
Many communities have programs to help people with schizophrenia with jobs, housing, self-help groups and crisis situations. A case manager or someone on the healthcare team can help find one. With appropriate treatment, most people with schizophrenia can manage their condition.
Learn More About Schizophrenia Services at Laureate Psychiatric Clinic and Hospital
Please call the Outpatient Clinic with questions, Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at 918-491-3700. Laureate Hospital is available 24 hours/7 days for all emergencies at 918-481-4000.