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Is paranoid schizophrenia serious?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Medicine
Schizophrenia is a serious and chronic (or life-long) disease. It cannot be cured. Symptoms may be treated but may not entirely go away. People with paranoid schizophrenia may see things that are not there, or talk to people that no one else sees. They may think that everyone is out to get them, or may hear voices that tell them to do dangerous things.

Some people with schizophrenia may be able to function quite normally with treatment, but others have a hard time having relationships, holding down a job, or even taking care of their basic needs such as food, clothing, and shelter. People with paranoia may often lash out in anger or because they are suspicious that people around them are trying to hurt them. Because of this, the family members of people with schizophrenia may also be impacted.

If you think that you or someone in your family may have paranoid schizophrenia, talk with your doctor. If needed, your doctor can refer you to a mental health professional for a more detailed evaluation.

Paranoid schizophrenia is a serious disease because it alters a person's perception of reality. Individuals with paranoid schizophrenia tend to have delusions and hallucinations - that is, they see and hear things that are not there, and they may have irrational paranoia that others are out to harm them or that they are famous. These delusions and hallucinations can interfere with people's everyday lives. Delusions and hallucinations can also put people with paranoid schizophrenia in dangerous situations. For instance, people with schizophrenia may think that they are invincible, causing them to act with little caution. People with paranoid schizophrenia may also have violent or even suicidal thoughts, which can cause them to harm themselves or others.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.