Schizophrenia is sometimes described as having ‘positive symptoms’ and ‘negative symptoms’.
Positive symptoms are experienced in addition to reality whereas negative symptoms affect your ability to function.
Positive symptoms of schizophrenia
Hallucinations – Seeing, feeling and hearing things that aren’t there. Hearing voices is the most common type of hallucination
Delusions – Believing things that others don’t
Disorganised thinking – The things you say might not make sense to other people. You may switch topics without any obvious link
Negative symptoms of schizophrenia
Lack of motivation
Change in sleep patterns
Poor grooming or hygiene
Reduced range of emotions
Becoming withdrawn – Not saying much, change in body language, less interest in things you used to enjoy
Low sex drive
Unable to concentrate
Poor decision making
A diagnosis of schizophrenia does not mean that you will have all these symptoms. The way that your illness affects you will depend on the type of schizophrenia that you have. The negative symptoms can vary in length of time you experience them and the severity.