Schizophrenia is a disorder that affects how a person thinks, feels, and behaves. Individuals with schizophrenia may seem like they have lost touch with reality and their perception of people and events around them. Although schizophrenia is not as common as other mental disorders, the symptoms can be very disabling. Symptoms of schizophrenia usually start between the ages of 16 and 30. Children can be diagnosed with schizophrenia as well, but this can be rare. The symptoms of schizophrenia usually fall into three categories: Positive symptoms: People with positive symptoms may ‘lose touch’ with some aspects of reality. Symptoms include hallucinations, delusions, thought disorders (unusual or dysfunctional ways of thinking), and movement disorders (agitated body movements). Negative symptoms: Reduced expression of emotions through the face or voice tone, reduced feelings of pleasure in everyday life, difficulty beginning and sustaining activities, and reduced speaking. Cognitive symptoms: Poor ‘executive functioning’ (the ability to understand information and use it to make decisions), trouble focusing or paying attention, and problems with working memory (the ability to use the information immediately after learning it). If you are currently experiencing or have experienced these symptoms before and would like to talk to someone about them, please book an appointment with us today.