Even though schizophrenia is quite rare during childhood, this doesn’t mean that it doesn’t occur at all. There are no known causes for children developing this condition but there are some circumstances that are likely to increase the chances of it happening. Mental disorder cases in your family are a clear factor of concern but there are several others as well. Malnutrition during pregnancy could also negatively influence the development of your child. Another cause of a dysfunctional behavior would be a viral infection during your pregnancy but also childhood abuse or trauma, drug consumption or stress during the early life of your baby.
Understanding childhood schizophrenia
If your child is already suffering from schizophrenia then you are probably looking for treatment options. In order to get a better idea of how you could help your child you should first get a better understanding of this condition. Schizophrenia is a brain disorder which causes the person affected to experience difficulties integrating into society. A schizophrenic child will commonly experience hallucinations, delusions, disorganizations in speech and thinking as well as social or occupational dysfunctions.
There are also different types of schizophrenia and it is important to determine which type you are dealing with before treatment begins. The most common type of schizophrenia are paranoid, disorganized, catatonic, undifferentiated and residual types. When compared to other types of schizophrenia, the paranoid may be able to function better in society. Paranoid schizophrenics are likely to have dulled emotions, memory and concentration problems. Paranoid schizophrenics adapt better in society because they are more organized.
Childhood schizophrenia symptoms
If you have noticed strange behavior in your child then you may want to look out for symptoms that are associated with schizophrenia. Those that are most representative of this condition are described below
The child may experience either or both visual and auditory hallucinations. Auditory hallucinations may also be voices without verbal structures such as laughing or whistling. Auditory hallucinations tend to happen more often than visual hallucinations. The sufferer is often delusional.
Children suffering from schizophrenia often experience high anxiety that keeps them from being able to normally interact with others.In some cases schizophrenic children may even become aggressive and have a tendency of violence. They may become a danger for both themselves and those around them.Schizophrenics may also be easily angered. The intensity of this symptom will range from mild irritations to rage.
Children suffering from this condition may also be perceived as being aloof. Others may see them as cold, physically and emotionally reserved and detached from others.
Schizophrenia is a very serious condition and should not be taken lightly. Although your child may not be necessarily suffering from schizophrenia, it is very important that you take immediate action and investigate further on your child’s behavior and mental state if you notice any of the above mentioned childhood schizophrenia symptoms in your child.
James is a writer and blogger with 5 years experience.