I find the same, schizophrenic with hallucinations [not delusions] - Amongst my hallucinating, the visual and tactile aspects limit my functionality greatly. I can’t move in some instances, can’t think in others.
Technically none of the shrinks I went to suspected that I was sz either but there was definitely something wrong with me.
What I hadn’t realized is that I fell into the Twilight Zone like many people before me but I was aware of the situation enough so that it (logically) alarmed me.
However sticking with rational logic I still had x number of years of my life to go and I couldn’t do them hiding under my bed so I had to accept the paradigm shift (so to speak) and see that new strange world as something to explore although I am still quite pissy a lot of times feeling like a ‘rat in a cage.’
I’m not sure if this is your same issue but ultimately the flood of conspiracy notions and loss of reality template isn’t ‘crazy.’ Crazy is defined by our reaction to our suspicions. Or, as example, suspecting everyone in the neighborhood to be aliens isn’t too crazy but proceeding to attack them because of that suspicion would be.
You didn’t mention work at all in your original post?
I work full time at a solicitors, dealing with property law - We handle millions of pounds worth of property sales, purchases and repossessions daily. The job requires high intelligence and focus.
If that was your original subject or point of interest, then obviously the attacks can leave someone unable to carry out their normal lives as the same level of functionality [let alone a working capacity] - Over here [UK] diversity laws state that equal opportunities must be given to mental health sufferers as long as declared fit to work - So if a company employ you knowing of your condition they cannot then dismiss you fairly for struggling with it’s symptoms, so we’re you to obtain a job requiring intelligence and a high level of functionality, the onus would be on you to seek help where needed and the employer to provide adequate assistance where needed.
Not sure if the same applies in the US, but given only an estimated 7% of the worlds schizophrenic patients are in employment, it would suggest either: Not all countries adopt the same perspective on mental health, or, not all have the fight to function at the best of their remaining ability.
Common symptoms for paranoid schizophrenia include auditory hallucinations (hearing voices) and paranoid delusions (believing everyone is out to cause you harm). However, two of the symptoms separate this form of schizophrenia from other forms.
Auditory hallucinations - NONE
Paranoid Delusions - YES (But not everyone only my parents).
I have delusional disorder but I haven’t experienced cognitive decline during an episode. With that said however, keep in mind that if the delusion is troubling it can ‘mute out’ frontal lobe functioning. That, as you likely know, is the center of rational calculative thought. An emotional disturbance (e.g., anger, fear, etc.) causes the amygdala to take over instead. When that happens, we become highly reactive instead of cognitively rational.
Why don’t you talk to the doctor about adding a low dose of medication for a while and try it out. That way you could compare how you feel now and how you feel with the medication - and see the difference and see if you do better.
The issue, I think, is that when a person is delusional (and the delusions are negative) they cause a person a lot of stress. That stress (specifically - the stress hormones), if it goes on for a long time (days or longer) can cause damage to the brain. This is one of the theories on why there is cognitive decline in schizophrenia and psychosis.
The medications help reduce your stress and reduce the delusions - which can help your brain.
See this news:
Gray Matter Loss in Brain Due to Psychotic Episodes / Schizophrenia, Not From Medications
And check out this poll on whether people here in our forums have found medication helpful:
No - you’d have to talk to another doctor about that. Ultimately I wouldn’t worry about the diagnosis. Just focus on getting your symptoms (delusions) undercontrol and working towards enjoying your life. That is the most important thing you can do. Work to keep your stress levels low. Try to identify what is triggering your delusions - are there certain stressful environments or people around you just before they start? That type of thing. I’m sure your therapist is helping you with this.