Dos and don'ts of handling a schizophrenic person - Evewoman


How to communicate with a schizophrenic person

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Schizophrenia is a mental disorder whose exact cause is unknown yet but can be a combination of genetics, environment and altered brain chemistry and structure.

Schizophrenic people are characterized by having thoughts and living experiences out of touch with reality. They are very sensitive to everything that surrounds them, usually feeling isolated and rejected by the society.

Learn how to relate and handle a schizophrenic person by following these tips:

  1. Speak to the person the same way you would do with anyone else. Just remember he or she may be having difficulties to understand you because of their own circumstances, for example listening to background voices that don’t exist. So keep calm during the conversation.
  2. Be aware of delusions. Four out of five schizophrenic people can see things that are not happening in the reality, these are delusions that can be experienced while socializing with others.

When the affected person is having a delusion, the best you can do is ask the person about what is he/she seeing and be part of it through your words. Never exclude the ill person when they are hallucinating.

  1. Talk to people who are close to the schizophrenic person, they may have more experience than you and can help you to understand him/her better. Also they may have the answers to the questions that are in your mind.
  2. Always have a back-up plan in case the sick person has an attack that can make him or her behave violent. When the conversation goes wrong you never know how their reactions can be.
  3. Be prepared to experience non-common things. A person with schizophrenia behaves and speaks different than someone who isn’t suffering the disorder. Always show respect to the person.
  4. Encourage the ill person to continue with the medication. Schizophrenic people tend to believe they are completely recovered after taking the medication for a while, when this happens they stop taking the medicines and the delusions and attacks start again.  
  5. When schizophrenic people become paranoid they can believe you plotting against them, in these cases avoid eye contact with them.
  6. Don’t let the affected person to see you texting or talking about him/her with another person. Be discreet, and wait to be alone to do so.  


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