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Schizophrenia Awareness Week - Part One

Early Symptoms

These symptoms can occasionally be confused for ‘typical’ adolescent behaviour. So long as we all take any suicidal thoughts or talk (even from ourselves) seriously and reach out for help we will be able to limit the harm done.

Some early symptoms include:

· Isolating themselves from friends and family.

· Changing friends or social groups.

· A change in focus or concentration.

· Problems sleeping.

· Irritability and agitation.

· Difficulties with schoolwork, or a drop is grades.

Positive Symptoms

These symptoms are behaviours that aren’t typical in otherwise healthy people. They may include:

· Hallucinations – Experiencing things that appear real but aren’t. People might see, hear or even smell things others don’t for example.

· Delusions – This might be when a person believes something absolutely despite any evidence or facts to the contrary.

· Thought Disorder -This may be an unusual way of thinking or processing information.

· Movement Disorder – This might be moving in an agitated way or holding strange postures.

Negative Symptoms

These symptoms interrupt a person’s usual emotions, behaviours, and abilities.

· Disorganised thinking or speech – the person might change topics rapidly when speaking.

· Trouble controlling impulses.

· Odd emotional responses to situations.

· A lack of expressions or emotions.

And a few other varieties as well.

Please know that some or many of these symptoms are also indicative of other mental illnesses so if you are feeling unwell, or you know someone who is, please call a doctor to get a formal diagnosis. This will ensure that you receive the right treatment if any is required.

To read more about these symptoms please check this article out: https://www.healthline.com/health/schizophrenia#symptoms

Schizophrenia Awareness Week – App of the Day!

The app we want to introduce you to first is called Check-In, created by BeyondBlue and Two Bulls. It’s free to download for anyone who wants to check in with a friend or family member who seems to be struggling but are also worried about saying the wrong thing.

Check-In takes users through four easy steps that get people to think about what to say, how to give support and even where to have to conversation. There is also a section that goes through things to consider, like if the friend denies the problem or making people feel confident in what they should say.

There is an opportunity for people who are feeling some of the symptoms above and may not know what they mean to start a conversation about how they are feeling. This will open a conversation so they can get help and support when they need it.

The content includes common questions and suggestions about what to do if people don’t get the response or answer that they were expecting. There are some great tips for looking after personal mental health, links to online forums and a range of other supports for Australians.

Once the conversation has been had users can go back and rate the usefulness of the advice. The app will also then give advice on next steps and suggestions on how to proceed.

Do you need emergency help?

NT Mental Health Line


Ph: 1800 682 288

Lifeline


Ph: 13 11 14

www.lifeline.org.au

Emergency Services


Ph: 000

Kids Helpline


Ph: 1800 55 1800

www.kidshelpline.com.au

Suicide Call Back Service


Ph: 1300 659 467

Headspace


Ph: 1800 650 890

www.headspace.org.au