Schizophrenia.com

Few questions?

#1

Hi, The periods of psychotic flare ups have become very far apart thankfully, and lately only last for 20-40 minutes, so I am journaling every thing I hallucinate and thought disorder as well as nightmares. This is helping me with my appointments with my specialists. I use techniques from mindfulness skills and deep relaxation the two are very different from each other. Very effective! I can read factual articles and magazines but I do not read fiction well, I watch fiction movies occasionally and enjoy them immensely! Does anybody manage their thoughts really well and then have flare ups that leave you feeling like anything could happen to you if it happens out in public or with a friend that doesn’t understand schizophrenia? What coping skills do you use I should sure do with some advice. Lollie

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#2

i use to use deep relaxation and it was very effective, my nurse gave me a tape at first and then a cd and i used both to try and cut down my anxiety and stress, it really did help.

idk what mindfulness techniques you are talking about tho if you could explain what that is?

no the other thing was the feeling of anything can happen which was for me the feeling that something bad would happen which is a mixture of paranoia and stress/anxiety and it stopped me from going out at one point and the only way i could combat it then was to go out with someone or walk the dog as protection and also i would try and have an answer for some of these negative thoughts like if i thought something bad was going to happen i would say ‘what is the chances of that?’ or ‘that could never happen’ etc but the only way i really was able to get a grip on it fully was when i started on my new med. hope this helps.

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#3

I was taught to use a breathing technique, as I have paranoid schizophrenia and I start to think that everyone is against me. I would get psychotic and then angry, I seem to be unique in the fact that I get angry when I become psychotic…both angry at myself and angry at imaginary people. But now I am doing better on multiple meds, a cocktail of meds really, they all work to balance each other out, and I dont feel as short-fused.

I used to get furious when I had episodes of loud and particularly spiteful auditory hallucinations, and I would go lift weights or practice boxing to exhaust myself and try to reach peace. I would also get wasted to go to sleep and quiet the voices and numb the pain of my sick brain.

But enough about me, what you’re doing is perfect! you have insight and you keep a log on your condition, which is invaluable, as insight is ultimately the deciding factor in recovery. I now have a system of “nipping psychosis in the bud” where I notice a delusion is getting stuck in my head and I dissect it and disprove it to myself before I believe in it, and as far as auditory hallucinations go, they are very rare now and they don’t bother me as much because I can tell what’s a hallucination. Relaxation techniques are great, mine works pretty well. I do my best to keep objectives that outweigh my psychotic symptoms, even though I am virtually symptom free and considered to be in remission. For example, it is my “mission” to go to school and take notes and make A’s. Nothing stops me from completing these “missions”. I still went to class when I was switching meds and having a pretty severe episode, I just make demands of myself. I twitched and fidgeted my way through class then went home and screamed and cried, but I went to class and did my work before I let myself behave like a sick person.

Priorities, a desire to achieve your goals, and insight into your psychosis are all very important. You have strong insight, which is the key to recovery. Until I had taken a bunch of psych classes (I am a psych major), read books about my condition and talked with doctors for hours and hours, I didn’t have strong insight, I would get angry and confused as to what was real. Now I am on more meds, have more insight, and have practiced going beyond my comfort zone.

Getting your comfort zone greater until it includes the whole world is something I try to do.

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#4

Mindfulness , a simple way of relating to our experiences, which can have a profound impact on painful, negative experiences we encounter.
Characteristics of mindfulness involves
Stopping
Paying attention
Becoming aware of the present moment realities
Not judging whatever is happening as good or bad
Definition
The non judgemental observation of the ongoing stream of internal and external stimuli as they arise "Ruth Barr(2003)
Keeping ones mind consciousness alive to the present reality, Thick Nathan-Hanh(1976)
Mindfulness is simply the knack of noticing without comment whatever is happening in your present experience,Guy Claxton(1990)
Relevance of mindfulness practice to emotional distress
Creates a holding environment
Mindfulness gives us safe ‘platform’ from which to observe
Practice enables us to stay safely with distress until it disappears
Mindfulness steadies and grounds us
Mindfulness in Psychotherapy
1.Awareness
2.Of present experience
3.With acceptance
All three components are required for a moment of full mindfulness
What mindfulness is not
Not a relaxation exercise
Not a way to avoid difficulty
Not a way to by-pass personality problems
Not about achieving a different state of mind
What mindfulness is at out
Being present to our experience however distressing or upsetting it maybe
Brings us closer to difficulties but without becoming caught up in our reactions to difficulties
It I a slow gentle coming to grips with who e are
Settling in to our current experience in a relaxed, alert, open-hearted way

Lollie

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#5

Wow, thanks for the inspiration. I have been keen to apply myself to some thing other than my job at the healing centre, I am like your case in many ways I get angry to when I am psychotic! I lost my sibling 3years ago and find it hard to take a breathe between hours in the day being pscycotic, losing my sister was a great loss and tragedy.
I liken the grief to “the longest tear” (a book i am yet to write) She like you went happily about her day with all the confusion a young person terminally ill with 2 children (MS4&MS15) I became a lot more grateful and in-touch with reality. She like you are an inspiration you’ve been at your lowest, touch wood (thinking positively) and your making the most out what life has given you.
I am still yet to place my feet firm on the ground in the career world and don’t feel to ambitious, but I know what I am meant to do will come to me. One day soon I hope!

Lollie

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#6

I guess I have flair ups a lot. I have low level hallucinations with the constant chattering voices. Faces coming out of the walls, and this new one is a cat. Just a cat tromping around, always just on the edge of my peripheral vision. I have tactile hallucinations all the time and a lot of false memory and delusions to work through. I have a lot of disorganized thinking and I work hard to keep myself in line.

I do use breathing techniques if I’m on that ledge looking down in to another tumble from stable ground. I do try and assess what is worst right now? Like right now… What is worse? The panic babble from my voices or the delusion that I’m fighting off? The delusion is worst of the two so I’ll just have to ignore the voices.
There are a few other new gifts from my head circus that I’m going to have to get a handle on.

I journal everything all the time so I can discuss with my therapist and pdoc. Sometime when I go back and read what I’ve written a few days later, I feel better when I can read it and say to myself… “That makes no sense.”
I’m trying meditation recently. It’s easier then it used to be. My whole family is prone to hiding in a long bath to just let the brain and the body catch up with each other. I do believe that keeping calm, breathing and trying to rationalize the best I can has helped me cope with my head circus.

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