Antipsychotic medications, the primary treatments for schizophrenia, alter how the brain works and communicates with the rest of the body by affecting the brain’s chemical messengers, neurotransmitters.
The most common medication used to treat schizophrenia is an antipsychotic medication. There are two types: typical and atypical. Both reduce the positive and negative symptoms by affecting the amount of serotonin and dopamine (two common neurotransmitters) that is available. Typical antipsychotics tend to treat the negative symptoms better, so it is not uncommon for you to be on multiple medications at once. Some drugs used to treat schizophrenia can cause some nasty side effects. Some have to be watched as closely as a toddler on a playground and blood tests may be necessary, so be sure to tell your doctor about anything unusual. And definitely do not stop taking the meds cold turkey.