Psychotic patients who behave in ways that put themselves or others in danger should be hospitalized. If you notice disturbing behavioral changes in a family member or a friend, seek medical help right away. Your doctor or a trained professional at a health center or mental health service can offer advice about the course of action to take.
Your doctor is the best source of information on the drug treatment choices available to you.
Psychotherapy may be useful for some types of psychosis. For psychosis that was precipitated by some types of stress, psychotherapy can help patients cope with the event. Psychotherapy can also help people with schizophrenia whose symptoms are being controlled with medication regain the skills and behavior patterns they need to function normally.
With proper treatment, people suffering from psychosis frequently improve; some even recover. Patients whose psychosis is caused by an underlying medical problem typically recover once the problem is addressed. When the origin of psychosis is psychiatric in nature, the prognosis is not always promising. It is estimated that a third of people with schizophrenia will improve, a third will stay about the same, and another third will be debilitated by the illness. When schizophrenia starts later in life, the prognosis tends to be better. Patients with a family history of schizophrenia, early onset, and poor functioning prior to symptoms generally do worse.
Maintaining a good and lasting doctor—patient relationship is essential. The therapeutic alliance among the doctor, patient, and any family members or close friends in the patients life is critical. Both the patient and his loved ones should have confidence in the doctor and feel comfortable discussing problems as they arise. A caring doctor can help the patients family and friends understand the illness and cope with their own frustrations.
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