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What is Schizoaffective Disorder?

Schizoaffective disorder is a chronic mental health condition that consists of schizophrenia and mood disorder symptoms. This can include hallucinations or delusions, and depression or mania. There are numerous individuals that are misdiagnosed with depression or bipolar disorder from schizoaffective disorder. It is still unknown if this mental health disorder is related mainly to schizophrenia or  mood disorder. However, it is normal for both conditions to be treated together. There is about 0.03% of the population that are affected by schizoaffective disorder with an equal number between men and women. There are two types of schizoaffective disorder: bipolar type and depressive type. Bipolar type consists of episodes of mania and sometimes major depression whereas depressive type occurs when there are only major depressive episodes. 

Here are the symptoms listed down below: 

1. Individuals can experience delusions. This can be described as false and at time, strange beliefs. 

2. Hallucinations can also occur where individuals may hear or sense things that are not real. 

3. There could be risky, out of the ordinary behavior. Individuals may feel empty or worthless which are considered to be depression symptoms. 

Here are the risk factors listed down below: 

1. Genetics is considered to be a risk factor since individuals may inherit tendencies that correspond to schizoaffective disorder. 

2. Schizophrenia correlates to lower levels of dopamine, a type of neurotransmitter that plays a whole in how individuals feel pleasure. It also helps to manage mood and thinking. 

3. Scientists also believe that viral infections can lead to schizoaffective disorder if at ask for it.

Here are the different types of treatments listed down below: 

1. Medication can be used to treat schizoaffective disorder. This can depend on whether the individual is experiencing symptoms of depression or bipolar disorder. 

2. Psychotherapy and family therapy are also other ways to help this mental disorder. The goals are to help individuals learn more about the illness and how to manange the every day problems that may arise. 

3. Electroconsulsive therapy is a treatment for adults that do not respond well to psychotherapy or medications. This type of therapy occurs when a quick electric current is sent through the brain while the patient is undergoing general anesthesia. Doctors believe that there will be changes in brain chemistry and conditions may be reversed. 

For more information about schizoaffective disorder, visit and read the following links below. 

1. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/schizoaffective-disorder/symptoms-causes/syc-20354504

2. https://www.nami.org/About-Mental-Illness/Mental-Health-Conditions/Schizoaffective-Disorder

3. https://www.rethink.org/advice-and-information/about-mental-illness/learn-more-about-conditions/schizoaffective-disorder/

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