Schizophrenia involves a breakdown between a person’s thoughts, emotions, and behaviors, which can lead to faulty perceptions, inappropriate actions, withdrawal from reality and an overall sense of mental fragmentation. Many people with schizophrenia are misunderstood because of the way they think and act – in fact, loss of touch with reality, disorganized speech or behavior, and difficulty with concentration and memory are just a few symptoms of schizophrenia. If you’ve been diagnosed with the disorder, you may understand that you experience more difficulty with social relationships than others. This can be particularly distressing at first, but understanding the ways in which schizophrenia affect social cognition may help you in gaining better knowledge of tools that you can use to help lessen the severity of some of these symptoms.
A 2017 study published in the journal Mental Illness sought to explore emotion perception, theory of mind (ability to understand another person’s knowledge, beliefs, emotions, and intentions and using that to navigate social interactions) and social knowledge in individuals with schizophrenia. Researchers from the study analyzed 36 people diagnosed with schizophrenia and in an outpatient treatment program and compared them to 36 people of comparable age and education but with no mental illness diagnosis. Several neurocognitive tests were conducted, and the researchers found that schizophrenia patients displayed significant impairments in all three areas studied.
Due to these social cognition impairments, it’s important for individuals diagnosed with schizophrenia to seek treatment from a reputable treatment center; treatment may involve medication, therapy, as well as social skills training which could greatly improve a person’s interpersonal interactions. Schizophrenia is often misunderstood, which can also make it difficult to form and maintain friendships. With the right treatment however, you can begin taking steps towards building a support network and life that is conducive to your recovery.
If you haven’t already, speak with a professional from a reputable treatment center to learn more about programs that could assist you on your journey to recovery. It’s never too late to seek the help you need.
Avalon Malibu is a world-renowned, California state-licensed mental health and substance abuse recovery center. If you are ready to seek treatment to develop the tools you need to overcome life’s obstacles and be on the road towards happiness, health, and well-being, call us today at 888-958-7511 for a consultation. It’s never too late, and there are people here ready to help you.